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My Weekend as a True Booter, Part 1

Last year was my first experience with roleplaying games. I'll admit, somewhat bought into the moral panic of the late '80s and early '90s when it came to RPGs, but the only RPG I'd been exposed to was Dungeons & Dragons. I had no idea that there were other games out there such as Car Wars, Pathfinder, GURPS, and so many others by which people had cut their teeth and created vast new worlds beyond human imagination.

It was only fitting, then, that my first RPG was one in which I played a ferret among a business of other ferrets. That's right, ease into it.

Since then, Fear The Con and the Fear The Boot community has held a place of honor in my heart because of how welcoming they are of everyone into their community and their hobby. This weekend, I spent time preparing for and having a great time playing make-believe with friends and relative strangers.

On Thursday, the official day before the convention, I spent all day at the Drury Inn playing tabletop board and card games with several people who had come into St. Louis from out of town. Some of these people had been in town all week and spent several days sightseeting, so I was glad to spend a little time just relaxing and playing some games with them.

I sat in a round of Aye, Dark Overlord, which was a fantastic storytelling game of passing the blame and trying to come up with arguments and counterarguments as to why you don't deserve to be tossed to the pit of utter death and despair by the Dark Overlord. Very fun game.
But the fun didn't stop there. Space Cadets: Dice Duel was a frantic, fast-paced dice rolling game where you captain a starship and attempt to destroy the other starships around you. Working in teams, we communicated to load our weapons, navigate the ship, acquire target lock and jam the opponent's signals. Very stressful fun.

Smash Up. I had seen this played on the TableTop podcast with Wil Wheaton, and I wasn't sold on it the first time I watched it. But I watched it again recently, and got the hang of it once we started playing. I was surprised that as we got closer to the end of the game, we were all within 2 or 3 victory points of taking it all. Lots of fun to be had in this one.

Aside from that, we played Pandemic (4 of us lost), Damage Report (4 of us won on a module designed for only 2-3 players, even though I'd left out a few of the damage report cards, so yeah, we cheated a little), and whatever else came up. Got to reconnect with a few people I'd met last year and saw some new faces.

I finally got to meet Grant from Saving The Game, a Christian podcast about RPGs, when I picked him up from the airport just a few miles from the hotel & convention sites.
Really nice guy, and takes a darn good picture. I had a chance to talk with him about RPGs, his podcast, and what we liked about the hobby. We talked a bit about our families and what we do for our full-time work. He had signed up to play in my Slot 1 game at Fear The Con on Friday morning, and as of this writing, I'm looking forward to playing with him and a few other people I didn't get to play with last year.

To top everything else off, World Wide Wing Night, a staple of Fear The Con, was another raging success. Since WWWN was a stretch goal of the convention's Kickstarter (the con was fully funded, allowing people to attend for free), everyone in attendance was appreciative of the efforts put forth by the organizers. And since pretty much everyone there was a backer, it seemed as though everyone there might have been a little bit more invested than they might have otherwise been.

Maybe that's just me, but whatever the case, wings were eaten, cake was moist and delicious (from what I heard), and the beer ran out. Always the sign of good things to come.

Oh, and Mikey Mason performed. Always a treat.
Plus, I love the dude's facial hair.

I'll have more in the coming days on how my experience at Fear The Con went. Keep your eyes open.

There Is No Box.

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