E’s Con Travels: GenCon 2009, The Gaming

Wow.  What a totally awesome experience.  When GenCon says it is “The Best Four Days in Gaming” they are not joking.  I feel like I did sooooo much, but only scratched the surface of what I could have done.  If only it was the best WEEK in gaming, then maybe I could have squeezed it all in.  Maybe.

If you followed my tweets over the past week, you’ve gotten a lot of the highlights of the GenCon experience.  Here’s the wrap-up with some extra commentary for you, split into a few sections to organize things better.

First… the gaming!

Drunk D&D

DD&D was a great way to kick off the convention.  At the table we had:

  • Phil the ChattyDM as … duh, DM.
  • DaveTheGame as Fatbot the Warforged who eats everything
  • Graham (Critical Ankle Bites) as Ponzi the Halfling Fonzi
  • Christine (Graham’s fiancee) as Mary Juanita the “High” Elf
  • Jared (Head Injury Theater / Goblin Stompers D&D sneaker contest winner) as Emowgli the goth kid who hated everyone
  • Bartoneus as J’Booty the “Boardmage” surfer / ladies man
  • and myself, Honey Potts the psionic  bard band slut (She’s 18, really she is!)

We were the DungeonBowl team from St Tequilus High School and were competing against the team from Wandering Monsters High School, except they were dirty cheats.  Not much actual DungeonBowl got played, but the following awesomeness happened:

  • Honey un-summoned her summoned armor and ran naked across the field.  She also got it on with Ponzi.
  • J’Booty convinced just about every female in the vicinity to go under the bleachers with him.
  • Fatbot ate four light breakfasts, a table, grass, and miscellaneous things from the cabinets of the Science Lab before finally revealing that he was an exchange student – a Gelatinous Cube stuffed in a Warforged shell.
  • MaryJuanita and J’Booty smoked much illegal herbs, including getting all the DungeonBowl “balls” high.
  • Ponzi crashed through people with his summoned black motorcycle, but I think the best vehicle was the Zamboni that J’Booty stole.
  • Emowgli had a very special piece of armor – The Codpiece of Genital Agony.  It had a pull start like a lawnmower and the spikes whirled around slashing people.
  • We were visited by a mystery WotC employee just in time for Phil to ask the important question – whether the Beholder could turn his eye on himself and put himself to sleep to get away from the lecherous intentions of Honey, who had seen multiple tentacles and gotten extremely turned on.

Quote of the night from the Beholder: “Why do my eyes smell funny?

D&D Press Game

We got to play a (way too short!) press game with Wizards of the Coast’s Jeremy Crawford DMing on Friday.   Because the ENnie Awards were Friday night, we had to cut the game short so we all could get dinner and such.

WotC has these really nice character cards for the delves now – full color, all the math done for you.  Very nice.  They all had goofy names, tho, so Jeremy encouraged us to rename our characters however we liked.

I picked Lam the Changeling Sorcerer and added a silent B to her name.  The adventure began with farmers being kidnapped and the sound of sad sheep.  Oh noes!  There was even a dead sheep in the first room.  Jeremy pointed out that the dead sheep was difficult terrain.  Poor sheep.

Bartoneus was playing the druid and when he switched into his Wild Shape, he used a mini that Jared brought along – totally freakin’ awesome.  For the rest of the encounter, it was all about “Schmooooo!

My other favorite quote was from Jared, who was fighting the swarm of snakes.  He used his shield to “scoop” them, and said: “I start scooping the snakes! Scooping them violently!” He rolled poorly, and the scooping was more like shoving the snakes around harmlessly.  Oh well.

When we realized that we were out of time, DaveTheGame gave the battle cry: “LEROY JENKINS!!” and we all ran into the last room, just to see what was there.

It was a good game and I wish we would have had time to complete the delve.  Jeremy is a fun DM and willingly went along with our antics, which is always appreciated!

All-Bard D&D

If you remember, back in March, I took a trip to StupidRanger land and played a very awesome game of D&D with StupidRanger & Dante.  SR and I were the twin Goliath bards, Toccata and Fugue, raised in a dwarven orphanage for the questionably sane.  We had so much fun we decided to do an all-bard game at GenCon with some extra people.

Added to the mix were:

  • Vanir from StupidRanger as Tarrasque Loaf, the rock n’roll bard
  • DaveTheGame as Beatbox Machine, the ipod/beatboxing warforged bard
  • Bartoneus, who took over Toccata when SR had to leave early

Fun parts / quotes:

  • Dave’s warforged: “I calculated a 71% chance that was an adventure hook.” Metagaming ftw.
  • Dave’s beatboxing/ipod warforged bard smells fire, starts playing “We Didn’t Start The Fire.”
  • After SR left, Bartoneus summoned her spirit bear Bobo and started to… well… here’s Vanir’s reaction: I could get a bear job? Fantastic!!!
  • We fought three versions of undead Michael Jackson (too soon? go beat up Dante, he was the DM!) and Stevie Nicks.  Almost got to the final boss (William Shakespeare, of course) but had to stop due to lack of time (sense the theme here? GenCon needs 30 hour days!).

Out of the Box

I wish we could have had a bigger audience for this, but it was 9 am on Sunday, so everyone was pretty much beat by then.  The good thing about me being beat is I’m too tired to be self-conscious.

Our party was sent to a rehab facility to learn how to work together, since last time we tried to work together, we failed miserably and the person we were escorting got kidnapped.  (Oops.)

We had:

  • Me – psychic illiterate shifter druid, Lily Morningwood
  • DaveTheGame – rogue/wizard Henry Ne’erDoWell, who claims “ain’t no problem that can’t be fixed by stabbin’.
  • Bartoneus – the Virtue of Cunning, Linguist bard, who spoke Primordial, “the language of love……. and creation.
  • Chgowiz – the puzzlemaster wizard
  • Yax – the effeminate barbarian
  • Vanir – the co-DM / voice of Henry’s eye
  • Dante – DM
  • StupidRanger – photographer / audience treat distributor

The whole game was recorded by the folks at PulpGamer, but I’m honestly not sure it’s fit to distribute.  There were some questionable moments that could be NC-17 rated.

Each character had a solo encounter/puzzle they had to solve in order to save the party from death being squished by the ceiling.  In Lily’s scenario, she was dropped into a field with a fence.  There was a sign on the fence, but obviously, Lily couldn’t read it.

Dante wrote down what the sign said and showed it to the rest of the group and the audience, who snickered.  Why did I pick an illiterate character?

I could hear sounds on the other side of the fence but couldn’t see anything.  On the ground next to me, I found a bag of flour, two wands, a pink feather boa, and a vial of pink liquid.  The pink liquid turned out to be displacer beast pheromones.

I figured, “Why not?”  After all, I’d already had one character defile a Beholder this week, why not add a Displacer Beast to the list?  I donned the pink feather boa, poured displacer beast juice all over myself, and used my wild shape to turn into a displacer beast.

Everyone started laughing, which clearly meant I’d done something either horribly wrong or horribly AWESOME.   A male displacer beast jumped me and started to… well, you can figure that out.  I promptly began making cat mating noises (BRRRRRRROWWWWWWW!!!) – because as we all know, displacer beasts are cats! – and it was totally awesome.

That game was probably the best D&D game ever, and we barely even rolled dice.  It was all about the roleplaying.  There were several moments that brought me to tears, I was laughing so hard.  (Most of those were due to Bartoneus’ character.)  Seriously, you should have been there.

Ultimate Dungeon Delve

I was SO BUMMED that we couldn’t fit the Ultimate Dungeon Delve into our schedule this year.  We beat the one at Origins and were hoping to beat the new adventure at GenCon, but the scheduling just didn’t work out.   Don’t worry, UDD!  We let you live this time, but we’ll be back… we’ll be back!

How about you?

What fun games did you play at GenCon 2009?

About e

Since 2008, E. Foley of Geek’s Dream Girl has been helping geeks from around the world find love. She writes amazing online dating profiles for her fellow geeks and guides them through the perilous waters of the dating scene and out the other side. She's totally proud to report that she's even caused a couple geek weddings! She lives in Maryland with DaveTheGame, her adorable cats, Mr. Peanut & Don Juan, and Titania, Queen of the Cocker Spaniels. (Email e, or follow @geeksdreamgirl on Twitter.)

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