If you played or observed my game, or just have an opinion, please leave a comment below.
As I started running convention games again after my experience at Historicon last year, I try to do a short after action review after each convention to make my games better. My old Section Chief would be proud...
I hope anything running a game of any sort will find this useful.
Here are some good things that I think I want to SUSTAIN:
- Under advice from the players I had at Southern Front, I reduced the table size, getting everyone into the action faster. Plus it was easier for kids playing to reach and adults could sit down and play.
- I had a sign in sheet at my table, that included a sign saying "Returning at [X] PM" whenever we went to eat. This really reassured players that we were coming back and would start on time, so they did not go looking for another game for fear this one would not happen. ()This was my wife's idea!)
- Started at 9:30 on Saturday morning and not at 89am sharp, this let me pick up a lot of players that got in a little later.
- Be Welcoming! I had walk-on parts available and was able to handle folks who just walked by and wanted to join in or got there a little late. Partially because...
- PULP = FUN, the genre is good for that, Maybe not so much if you are doing Wagram, but pulp style games are perfect for that.
- Games were FAST, between 1 1/2 and 2 hours playing time. This meant no one got bored and everyone has time to shop the vendors and look at other games too.
- I used director's judgment on when to stop the game. Otherwise, folks will fight to the last man. Once it became apparent that folks were going to get away, I pulled the plug. Nothing ends a game like having a Great Old one show up!
Some things I still want to sustain that I did time before last as well are:
- Pack ahead of time
- Range Sticks and quick play sheets still worked well.
- Have a defined goal in mind. Mine was a fast fun, engaging game that lasted no longer than 2 hours.
Here are a few areas of improvement I think I want to tweak for next time.
- Maybe a small headset and speaker. My wife is a teacher and has one, it would allow me to stay out of the way more and everyone can hear me as I walk around the perimeter.
- I had a 3rd table that I gave up for another GM. It was the right thing to do, but if possible it would have made managing extra stuff easier such as...
- Staging props and figures that can show up on the table at any time. I spent too much time rummaging under the table for dinosaurs and quicksand traps.
All in all, it was an enjoyable experience, I am thinking about my next scenario and am feeling Rocket Men and ships. Lots of ships.
Until then, good gaming!