Whenever it comes to travel, I am definitely a worrywart. I walk everywhere, triple check that I have everything I need again and again. Then I leave and realize I forgot something important. By now I call that life. I guess this is the tale of my PaizoCon trip.
The trip started the night before, around 10pm in Colorado when Louis gets on Skype as I’m in the middle of a DDO dungeon. No worries, I immediately drop my DDO friends and get on Skype. Louis is all What’s wrong? And generally grumpy (this is not unusual). So I tell him that nothing’s wrong and that I need the final version of Encounter at Ramat Bridge, the one with all the fancy lettering and the standard NeoExodus cover. An hour later (which makes it 1AM in Florida), Louis goes to bed, I have my mod, the universe is at peace, everything is good.
5:44AM in Colorado. I wake up nervous as all hell. I finish packing (medicine and moved some gear in the suitcase). Then watch some TV (Swamp People) and wait for 8AM to leave.
8AM, I leave head to Kinko’s again to print NeoExodus world maps and the mod. Long story short (can be resumed by not enough sleep, no coffee makes JP go crazy) I have the NE maps, but not the mod. I will have to print that at the con or (horror) run off my laptop...
I get to Denver early so I stop for a fast-food breakfast stop. Find a parking spot in a FULL eastern lot. I mean I in zone ‘Z’, a good 20mins walk from the terminal. That should take care of SOME of the nastiness I had earlier.
Get a nice seating upgrade, and then off to security.
If you ever flew out of Denver airport, there are two main checkpoints. Both of those: FULL. Line at a standstill. I overhear a TSA agent recommending we go through the land bridge to concourse A (where I was leaving from.) SWEET ZOMBIE JEEBUS! The line is only marginally shorter there! Oh well, you stiil have over two hours before my flight so it’ll give me something to do (proof: I am blogging about it right now!)
As I get to the front of the line, I take a look at my boarding pass. WTF? I am not Tracy Cunningham! WTH!? Needless to say, I was told to return back to the Frontier Airlines counter. GRRR. Again, Over an hour before boarding… A nice lady corrected my boarding pass (to the back of the plane, Tracy!).
Blog about it.
So I get to the hotel on Thursday. Nothing special to write about… It will suit its purpose just fine. Quickly I see other Venture Captains sitting in the lobby: Ryan B from Minneapolis/Saint Paul, Eric B from San Diego, Auke T from the Netherlands. Check in, then GAME TIME!
The four of us took on the Goblins of the Free RPG module We Be Goblins. I admit I had reservations about the whole idea of it. But when quality roleplayers get together and throw down, goblin-style… It creates a truly unique experience! Thanks to Aaron, our GM who put up with our cackling and a lot of super bright ideas. It will definitely make for a unique play experience. I’m looking forward to running it.
That night the VCs (our number had increased as we played) were invited to dinner by Paizo, and so we broke bread with Erik Mona, Jason Bulmahn and our immediate bosses, Mark Moreland and Hyrum Savage. The information exchanged made me extremely happy as I cannot wait to tell you about [NDA] and [NDA]. OH! But the most awesome of all has to be when they showed us the advanced copy of [NDA]. The book went around the table with some new art, a new expanded format on things that were missing, details on the new factions. I mean just awesome! Definitely, this next year will be a transformative one for the Society.
If I could describe in one word the Society-related products changes, news and internal goals that were shared with us, I would have to say ABSOLUTELY AWESOME, EXCITING AND REALLY FUN. I took from this a lot of ideas from the other VCs to help promote PFS in the Front Range. The dialog was very open, frank and extremely positive. Had it been just a meal it would’ve been a very good time. But the whole experience really blew it out of the ballpark. It was simply a delight.
Folks, if you believe that Society is going away any time soon, we (the VCs) have it on high authority that it is here to stay. Paizo’s dedication to it was really matched by our own. Such a great breath of fresh air. I mean I left the dinner ready to do a cheerleading routine. I was on top of the world. This is gonna be an even bigger success than previously.
With the feedback, comments, laments and opinion VCs provided, I think that even more and better changes may be on the horizon. Mark and Hyrum (especially) ARE listening and they steer this ship. Sure, not EVERYTHING I wanted to see made some headway, but I saw that many of the points I had presented, supported or commented will be expanded and implemented in one form or another.
Such a breath of fresh air.
I cannot give the Paizo staff enough credit and kudos. Really star-quality personnel.
Then back to the hotel for drinks and chat with, among many, Adam Daigle, Doug Daulton, Brandon Hodges, Matt Forbeck and a lot of others. Good times.