Wednesday, December 14, 2011

GenCon 2012

At about this time every year, I start to stress out about GenCon.  I worry that I screwed something up the previous year and won't be invited back.  I worry that maybe they needed me at some point when I was eating lunch and couldn't find me, and so I'm done.

I worry because I haven't seen any new rules in a few months, so maybe they've found someone else who will cost them less money and do a better job ...

It's all completely ridiculous. I know.  I work hard for them, and they know it. Have known it for a good long while, in fact.

Even so, I was greatly reassured a few weeks back to get an e-mail from Asmodee.  They're sending me some games. And I've had a sneak peek at the GenCon 2012 plans.

I can't spill the beans, but I really want to.  All I can say is that 2012 will be one of the Best GenCons Ever for me.  I say "one of" because that first GenCon will be hard to top - not because it was particularly great, but because it was My First GenCon.

Either way, the e-mail has reminded me that GenCon is coming. And, even though GenCon is only a part of my schedule for a few weeks per year, there are people working year-round on it. I wonder if Asmodee didn't finish last year's convention only to start immediately working on this one.

In fact, I have a hunch that it's always in the back of people's minds in this industry. I'm sure that, as they decide what to publish when, they have the various conventions marked on their calendars.  "This game is a big box.  While we could release it at any point between July and October, it'd be a good release for GenCon."  Or Origins. Or Essen. Or whatever convention they choose to push.  Larger publishers can probably release games at multiple conventions - "If we release this game at Origins, that leaves us that game for GenCon and that other game at Essen."

All of which is a reminder to me. My work in the gaming industry is part-time and seasonal. I do the non-demo work a few months before games are released, and it's sporadic at best.  There is no way I could make a living at it. But there are people who do make a living in the industry. Some of them make a pretty decent living at it - and they can't afford to lose sight of little things like convention dates.

And - even more amazingly to me - the folks working to make GenCon entertaining and wonderful are a microcosm of the industry as whole, which is people working to entertain us in our homes on our own schedules.

It's really rather intimidating for me to think about - that's a lot of people trying to keep us entertained ...

1 comment:

  1. Because I spent more time in the games rooms than the ex hall, I saw a lot of the volunteer DMs and judges and event runners. Those people are heroes. They get, like, some reimbursement, for making sure we have games to play. Not pay, just their hotels paid for. Sort of like you. I don't want to deprecate the people who get paid to make GenCon happen, because they deserve it, but the volunteers like you and all my DMs this year, HEROES.