GenCon 2013, Friday

Read about the lead up to GenCon 2013.

Read about Thursday at GenCon.

Read about Saturday at GenCon.

Read about Sunday at GenCon.

First day down, second on the horizon. Tired, but knew that the day had some great gaming ahead. Again we grabbed breakfast and headed to the convention center. We had our third DDNAA session from 8-noon.

Expo Hall Ho!

At noon we scheduled a 2 hour block for the Expo hall. Getting in there, it became obvious that there was no way I was going to see the entire hall. so I turned in my ticket to the Brandon Sanderson seminar.

It was huge, though not too crowded thankfully. I managed to snag an autographed copy of Numenera (Monte’s autograph: “Difficulty getting Monte Cook’s autograph: 6”), a Hirst Arts mold for cavern floors, the obligatory new set of dice (Game Science gem green), and the pre-ordered copy of Ghost of Dragonspear Castle. (This copy became one for a friend or E-bay since I received one from the DDNAA.)

There was far too much to write about, but I did want to mention the artwork. There were some incredible artists, and some impressive artwork, but I thought it was embarrassing how many pictures of fully nude women there were (not to mention the women dressed inappropriately, e.g, chainmail bikini). There has been good discussion of sexist artwork portrayal in fantasy on the Internet, but I didn’t see much evidence if it in the gallery. I did find some artwork worth purchasing, but I only took business cards since I didn’t have a way to transport it.

Tanis went to the Brandon Sanderson seminar, Epic Villans,and really enjoyed it. Brandon Sanderson is Tanis’ favorite author, and Brandon is very friendly with the fans. After the seminar, Tanis resolved to spend his commute time on the bus writing. I hope he does it. He has incredible talent, and I think he could do well. If nothing else, it’s a cathartic and productive exercise that trumps watching movies or playing video games.

Murder in Baldur’s Gate

The 4th session of DDNAA came and went, and our last event for Friday was the D&D prelude to adventure Murder in Baldur’s Gate. Matt Mosher from our DDNAA group was in this group too.

baldursgategroup
baldursgategroup

The freakiest occurrence was our DM; she looked almsot exactly like my wife’s aunt from Florida. It was also the first I’ve heard a D&D party referred to as “y’all”.

baldursgatedm
baldursgatedm

This time Tanis played Thar, a Half-Orc Barbarian, and I played Yoha Spihc (Chips Ahoy backwards!), High Elf Mage.

The adventure started with the group entering Baldur’s Gate on Founder’s Day in the market square near Black Dragon gate. There was lots going on while people waited for the speeches to start. One lady lost her cat and was screeching she would pay 10gp for someone to find it. Cutpurses plied their trade amongst the unsuspecting crowd. Vendors hawked their wares. The characters participated in the cacophany and tried especially to stop the cutpurses.

I, being the snooty elf, mingled with the aristocrats and gentry behind the stage before the speeches started. I didn’t really accomplish anything, but I figured it was a good vantage point that noone else had.

Spoilers start here - see below for the end of the spoilers

The Duke started his speech and after a few moments froze, hypnotized by something. Then came the assassination attempt. First crossbowmen attempted to shoot him, but we quickly squashed that threat. Then assisins/thugs started slaughtering peasants in the market. While the group moved to counter these assassins, I saw it as a ploy to disengage us from the Duke. I stayed behind, though as a mage, I didn’t really stand much of a chance of preventing another attempt by myself. I hoped I was wrong.

Sure enough, 4 other assasins came from the sides and charged the Duke on the stage. I did my best to stop them, and Matt hadn’t gone very far, so both of us were able to make a good showing. The Duke also awoke and he and the lead assasin fought.

The fight progressed, and the rest of the group joined us on the stage. We made a good showing of vending off external threats as the Duke and assassin were lockdd in combat. The Duke vanquished his foe, but that only unleashed a deadlier foe. The Duke was actually a Balespawn who had checked his inner demon/deity for years, but he lost it when attacked by his brother Balespawn. After his final blow, he contorted and twisted into a twisted demon looking creature, his aspect of Bale.

Unfortunately for me, in the ensuing fight I was sorely overmatched, and I died. I mean dead dead, not just unconcious. The druid made a valiant attempt at reviving me, but it was for naught. I don’t remember if he perished or not as well.

Thus begins the Murder at Baldur’s Gate.

End Spoilers

The game was fun and our DM ran it well. There were some hiccups and of course I wasn’t pleased to have died, but overall I was satisfied.

We stayed and chatted with the DM afterwards. She has been playing since the White Box days at university, but fell out of the hobby during the 2–3 days and only recently re-entered the scene. Her old GM from college gave her name to the Wizards Organized Play people, and here she is. She enjoyed D&D Next, though she admitted that she didn’t have a lot to compare it with.

During the game, a person at the next table had the best hat I saw during GenCon. (Sorry that it’s so blurry.)

genconbeholderhat
genconbeholderhat

Shakin’ and Steakin’

Tanis and I hadn’t eaten, so we stopped at Steak & Shake for the 2nd night, headed to the hotel, and crashed.