Suggestions for Gary Con X

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Buttmonkey, Mar 28, 2017.

  1. Buttmonkey

    Buttmonkey Troubadour

    In case you are looking for feedback, here are some post mortem thoughts on Gary Con IX:

    1. Overall, it was fantastic from an organizational standpoint.

    2. Clearer signage at the registration counter would be helpful. When I arrived on Wednesday to register, there were two lines with a separate line marked for GMs. It wasn't clear whether I was supposed to get into a specific line to start. For some reason, I stuck with the line on the right even though it was longer. That turned out to be correct since I wasn't supposed to go to the line on the left until after being processed on the right. Next year, it would be great if you had a START HERE sign.

    3. Thank you very, very much for adding real salad options (as opposed to a chicken Ceasar salad wrap) to the menu. However, the salads provided were a rip-off. I was excited by the relatively low $7 price until I saw what it got me: a small tub of spinach with a few strawberry slices. No dressing, no cutlery (not a problem since there was no dressing to get on my fingers), and very small. I know prices are going to get gouged when the hotel is the only food option at the table, but this seemed excessive. I ended up ordering more food for that meal, too, so it wound up being even more expensive. I hope they reduce the price or offer significantly more salad next year.

    4. Tableside service was a hot mess Saturday afternoon. It was impossible to find someone to take orders. Servers finally started showing back up around 2:30 and were very responsive from then on, but 12:00-2:30 was really bad.
  2. JediSoth

    JediSoth Troubadour

    I've already submitted a bunch of stuff via forms and face-to-face conversations, but here's one I just thought of:

    When assigning games to rooms, maybe someone could note in the event catalog (prior to registration, preferable) the accessibility of that event? There are a lot of attendees with mobility issues and some of those rooms aren't particularly accessible (the Swinghurst Theater is totally inaccessible if you're in a wheelchair and can't do stairs). As the con grows, it's going to be more and more important for people with mobility issues to know what challenges they're going to face and we can't count on them having been to the con often enough to remember all those details. Every con is someone's first con.
    Melf, Jarlaxle, PBurke and 1 other person like this.
  3. ESpratt

    ESpratt Level 0 Character

    This was my first Garycon - and I had a blast. Thanks everyone - The majority of my games were fantastic!

    A couple of suggestions:
    1. Clear signage upon arrival (front desk or the sign in the lobby) regarding the hours the registration desk would be open would have been nice.

    2. It would have been nice to have a cup explanation and a schedule of the non-game related events (auction, Hawaiian photo, hours of the vendor hall, bar hours, etc) in our swag bags. (some of this was online - but I really didn't spend a lot of time surfing the internet once I got to the resort)

    3. Table assignments for games should take into account the surrounding tables. I was in the 21+ Archer/Savage Worlds game @ 6pm Friday – and we were next to a table that I believe was 13+. We were a little rowdy . . . . and occasionally a little inappropriate. . . (Sorry!) Maybe have the younger style games in a specific ballroom in the 6pm/8pm slots?
    Otherwise – I also learned a few things:
    • Don’t sign up for a 8am game the morning AFTER a 21+ game
    • Bring a bottle opener/corkscrew – and some Advil
    • Drink more water.
    Melf, Poindexter and JediSoth like this.
  4. chgowiz

    chgowiz Footpad

    One suggestion I have for the wargames - please leave a 30 minute slot for breakdown, or allow us to specify that we need set up time/break down time. I saw this on a couple of the games that weren't on static tables that were set up for the weekend. And I experienced it myself - I had quite a bit of terrain and minis and I felt bad for the folks that had to wait. (Thank you!) I packed as quickly as I could, and I saw the folks pack/unpack as quick as they could, but it was very stressful. A 30 minute gap on the wargame tables would be appreciated!
    Melf, Jarlaxle and Poindexter like this.
  5. dndgeek

    dndgeek Troubadour

    This was my first con running a bunch of mini games, so I ran into the same challenges, despite my attempts to mitigate them. Unless a better idea presents itself, I'm going to list all of my mini events with a half-hour setup time (an hour for my largest events), so folks will know that they have that time at least between games if they want to schedule back-to-back. I hate to force my setup time into players' schedules, but I'm not sure I have a better choice.
    On the other side of that topic, for those GMs and players who are awaiting a table with a miniature event being run, please give them ample space and time to finish up their slot. I had one guy show up at the end of my Aliens game, sit down uninvited at our table while we finished the game and made snarky comments about who was going to clean up the soda cans on the table while I was clearly still cleaning up. Because of this, a few players also sat down (though the rest were very considerate and gave ample room) which only slowed down my packing up because I had to maneuver around these inconsiderate chumps. I checked the time as I walked out of the room with all of my stuff and it was exactly 6:00, the start of the next slot, despite their presence. If anyone knows if there is a place to lodge complaints about GMs and players, please share because I don't want to cause an incident at GaryCon, so I'd like to know my options ahead of time.
    Jarlaxle and Poindexter like this.
  6. Scott308

    Scott308 Chevalier

    One thing that I thought was poorly planned was the time the registration desk opened in the morning. It is inexcusable to have registration open at the same time the games start. I know that down in the Adventurers League room, we had some extremely unhappy players Thursday morning. They got up at 4:30 that morning and drove in, only to end up getting to their game 30 minutes after the start time because they had to wait for registration even though they were there early. As a result, their seats were given to players that did not have tickets, but were there looking to find a game. Since that was part one of a three part adventure, it messed up their schedule for the rest of the weekend as they tried to shuffle things around to play them in order. That first time slot was a mess, with players losing seats or arriving too late to be able to join.
    Jarlaxle, Poindexter and Steve Wright like this.
  7. Khasimir

    Khasimir Footpad

    Jason, sorry for not helping you out with the clean up. Between the gaggle of players descending upon the table and being in a hurry to get to the next game, I didn't do much to help out.
    It was quite a fun game and your Sunday game was great too. I'm hoping to get into that one next year if you run it again.
  8. chgowiz

    chgowiz Footpad

    I was very fortunate that the folks coming behind me were very understanding and did give me room to get my minis and terrain packed. They could see I was going as fast as I could. Thank you to whoever you were.

    I will say that this taught me to pack my minis already in the movement trays. Lessons learned!
    Poindexter likes this.
  9. dndgeek

    dndgeek Troubadour

    No worries! I absolutely do not expect my players to help me clean up. I really do appreciate the offers, but you don't know where I'm storing everything and I'm kinda OCD anyway, so I'd honestly rather just do it myself.

    Glad you enjoyed the games! I had a great time playing with you guys too. Aliens has become a GaryCon staple and since Grodog isn't bringing it these days, it is my duty to run it! The number of stages that I run just depends on my schedule that year, but I'll definitely run the Reactor Room at least, this time with terrain floors and walls. I try to remember to hold a seat out each year, so if you don't get in, message me or look for me at the con.

    Apologies for not making it through stage 3 of Eaters, but I have new ideas to cut down on prep time going forward. I'd love to bring it back next year, but I don't think I can swing it with the rest of my schedule, but it'll likely be back for the next anniversary date, in five years. I ended up running it for staff on Sunday night, removed the extra bows from stage 2 and it worked to perfection, with the players just barely eeking out a win, so now I can post the details (on, once I get the site rebuilt over the next week or two).

    See you next year!
  10. Traxion

    Traxion Footpad

    I'd like to see GMs who run more than 19 hours of games to get priority registration. This will allow them a better chance of getting a choice game that fits in with their running schedule.
    Poindexter, Khasimir and Scott308 like this.
  11. Buttmonkey

    Buttmonkey Troubadour

    I should point out that although the food service was very frustrating Saturday afternoon, I thought the wait staff overall was a lot better than last year.
    Poindexter likes this.
  12. Eddie

    Eddie Level 0 Character

    You still should work on noise in the rooms, but other than that, it was a lot of fun!
  13. Khasimir

    Khasimir Footpad

    I think this has merit. Have a GM's badge, which requires running say, 24 hours of games. The GM gets to sign up for 2 premier events and a total of say 6 events, before Gold badges get to register.

    I'd buy this badge in a heartbeat.
  14. Poindexter

    Poindexter Chevalier

    this may lead to requiring policing GM's to make sure they are not playing the system and skipping out on events. yeah, i know, here i go bringing integrity into it. sadly i have seen some failed integrity, even at GaryCon...
    Jarlaxle likes this.
  15. dndgeek

    dndgeek Troubadour

    You don't need a badge for it. Just give it as a credit for next year's con, like they currently do with GM awards, only instead of crediting you the equivalent of a silver badge, if you GM enough hours the previous year, you get the equivalent of a gold badge. It keeps the hardest working GMs coming back and rewards them more than the average GM for doing so. Pretty sure this would require little extra than what they're currently doing and very few people would get the advantage. I know we'd sure appreciate it, though, because our windows of opportunity to play are so few, it'd be nice to have a decent selection without having to pay the cost of a badge that we can't approach utilizing fully.
    Poindexter likes this.
  16. dndgeek

    dndgeek Troubadour

    My suggestion; nay, my plea, is to sell more posters. Every year I have to fight to get one of the small handful of full-size posters available (usually 3 or less after 2 are pulled for auction) and this year I lost that fight. It's the one thing I want a souvenir of every year. I'll preorder the damn thing if I have to. Take my money please.
    Poindexter likes this.
  17. Khasimir

    Khasimir Footpad

    I imagine this can be handled without requiring the "GM Police" to monitor.

    • You can limit the # of badges
    • You have the GM's all run in the same room(s), easy to keep track of when they are pulling the carts around.
    • In order to be eligible, you need to have run XX hours of games the year previous.
    • A current badgeholder has priority for the following year, unless they choose to give it up (ie VIG badges for Gen Con).
    As Jason said, they can easy bring in the refund aspect into this as well.

    Anyways, just my .02. ;)
  18. nesbit37

    nesbit37 Level 0 Character

    They sold those this year? I asked a few Gary Con people and got answers from they didn't know if they had them to if they did have them they were only for the auction this year. I also had picked up a full sized one each year I have attended, first year to miss it.
  19. dndgeek

    dndgeek Troubadour

    Yeah, I asked starting on the day I arrived, Tuesday, and got the same responses as you. I asked at each swag booth multiple times and even asked some friends on staff and didn't get an answer until all were sold. Kinda silly to have to chase swag like that. I actually requested that they sell some more online in the bazaar this year, but I don't know if that will actually happen. I really hope so, though, because the GCIX poster image is my favorite to date.
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2017
  20. Traxion

    Traxion Footpad

    I see it working like this:
    Bob ran 20 hours of events at GC9. He is registered to run 20 hours at GC10, he gets a GoldDM badge and gets to select his events after Platinum and before Gold.

    Sue did not run anything at GC9. She is registered to run 20 hours at GC10, she gets a regular GM badge and registers as the badge level (gold or silver) she bought. If she runs the 20 hours (or more) of events at GC10, then she'll be eligible for the GoldDM badge at GC11.

    Tom registered to run 20 hours at GC9, but only ran 18. He is registered to run 20 hours at GC10 he gets a regular GM badge and registers as the badge level (gold or silver) he bought. If he runs the 20 hours (or more) of events at GC10, then he'll be eligible for the GoldDM badge at GC11.

    Mary ran 36 hours of events at GC9. She is registered to run 40 hours at GC10, she gets a GoldDM badge and gets to select her events after Platinum and before Gold (not that she'll have any time available.) AND Luke needs to buy her a beer And Jim Kitchen stops by her table twice and drop off a shot or three.
    Poindexter and dndgeek like this.

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