Monday, November 1, 2010
Thoughts on Fall-In, 2010
Each con has four aspects that impact my experience, the gaming, the crowd, the vendor hall and the venue. On the first three out of the four, I would give the con high marks.
I had a good gaming experience, playing one long naval game (see my last post) and watching several others. Given the crowd appeared very light, there was plenty of open spaces and gaming opportunities.
The Vendor Hall had fewer vendors than usual given the timing of the con but most of the main vendors I wanted to peruse were there. I picked more than I should and enjoyed the shopping "experience". I was also pleased to see that my friend Ernie's Architects of War booth was doing a very brisk business. On the social front, I met some great people and had a fun time for the one and half days I was there.
The only real downer for me (and it's a big one) was the venue - the Lancaster Host. Hmmmm, how can I put this politely.... there are likely better accommodations in a Mexican prison. I got a room at the Host for Friday night and, honestly, would have checked out early if I was planning on staying a second night. It's just an awful facility - from the quality of the meeting rooms to the unspeakable food. Will the venue stop me from going to further events in Lancaster? I'm not sure. I will give Cold Wars a shot, but will stay at a different place and see how that goes.
I realize that the HMGS gets a lot flack on TMP and I certainly don't want to pile onto that gibberish. I appreciate all those guys/gals do in planning and running large meetings. I think they did a great job for Fall-In from a gaming and event management perspective and I appreciate their efforts. More importantly, since my only contribution is the pittance I pay in annual fees and admittance charge my complaints should be moderated a bit - it must be a thankless task to run these things. That said, please mark me down as a vote for a new venue for 2012 and on! How about the VCC (where Historicon was this year) or any other place in the MD/PA/DE I-95 corridor? Hey, I here there's a nice facility in Baltimore.
OK, that was a cheap shot, but I couldn't resist.