Chris Palmer This past Saturday, the HAWKs attended the HAR-CON gaming convention put on by the game club at the local Harford Community College. This con is a mixed gaming con, with video games, role-playing games, card games, board games, and miniatures games.
|A group of us posing with the French & Indian War table before the con started.|
The HAWKs presented three games: a large French & Indian War extravaganza using Muskets & Tomahawks rules, a Chaos Wars mass-combat fantasy game, and a Mobile Suit Gundam game. While the Chaos Wars and Gundam games were somewhat standard, with set start times and number of players; the club designed the big French & Indian War game a little differently. The game was set-up on a large “T” shaped table, and featured two forts, two villages,, and an Indian settlement; and about a dozen commands of troops ready for any gamers to walk up and play with. The idea was that the game would run all convention, and interested gamers could come to the table at any time, be assigned a command and a mission, and enter into the game with one of the HAWKs to help tutor them in the rules, and then leave whenever they wanted..
|The Fischer brothers’ Mobile Suit Gundam game.|
This plan worked out really well, with convention-goers coming and going from the battle the whole day. It was a lot of fun for the club and for those who came and took part.
|The HAWKs help some convention-goers play in the Muskets & Tomahawks game.|
|Our game was located right under the upper-level balcony, which allowed for some neat aerial shots of the game.|
|A close shot of the action, as French Cour-De-Bois attack a British-held fort.|
I was fortunate to have the opportunity to play in a couple games at the con. First I helped fill an empty seat at Rob’s Chaos Wars game, which I had never played before. It was a fun set of rules, and Rob’s figures and table are always beautiful and a treat to play with.
|Rob explaining the rules to my opponent, Zeb.|
After lunch, I was one of the panelists, along with David “Zeb” Cook and Buck Surdu, in a Game Designer’s Q&A session. The event was a lot of fun, and we were all pleasantly surprised that around 25 folks turned out to listen to us, and ask some interesting questions about our experiences with designing games.
|David “Zeb” Cook, Buck Surdu, and myself prepare to begin our Game Designers panel discussion. (Photo by Greg Priebe.)|
Later, I joined in with a group of the other fellows from the HAWKs on the patio outside the school’s student center to play a game called Johann Sebastian Joust, hosted by Markus Mabson. The game is a non-graphics, digital outdoor game in which each player holds a motion-sensitive hand controller and attempts to not move the controller too much, or it will internally vibrate and then lock the player out of the game. The game master plays music, fast or slow, from a base station that the controller is linked to, and the faster the music is the less sensitive the hand controller is, and the slower the music is the more sensitive the hand controller is. As the music plays, each player tries to move around, not disturbing the motion-sensitive hand controller in one of their hands, while at the same time trying to use their other hand to knock the arm of the other players to trigger their motion sensitive hand controller. Much hilarity ensued!
|Playing Joust with the HAWKs.|
Lastly, I played in a card game called “Gloom”, run by Emeril Getscher. In the game you play a dismal and eccentric Victorian family, and each player attempts to be the first to kill off their family in the most depressing ways. The game was fun and had some interesting tactics to work through.
|Myself, at the far end of the table, with some of the HAWKs, playing Gloom. (Photo by Jamie Colopietro.)|
I had a great time at the HAR-CON as did the rest of the HAWKs. It is a great little one-day gaming event, and we look forward to returning next year.