JP On Gaming

Monday, April 25, 2016

Lexicon 2016 After Action Report

This past weekend, I travelled back to Lexington Kentucky to attend Lexicon for the second year in a row. Last year, it served as a major plot point for our emerging Battle of Gytha storyline. It would also be the final convention where NeoExodus would make an apparition. It was an important event for me: I introduced new players to the campaign... some people you now know... Shall I say Randy? Mr Onero himself! You can read that after-action report from last year by clicking here.

This year, I had different plans. Having just run a number of events at Conglomeration and needing a personal break to play games, I chose Lexicon as "it". I did, however, send an event offering. Driving back from Mid South Con, I resolved to produce a 5e version of Saggakar, with options and everything so the game could be enjoyed using either of the systems. Then I spoke to Henry after their big announcement. The Lexicon decision was somewhat last-minute, but it did force me to get my stuff done.

The folks from Lexicon are great, quick response time, very interested in projects. I mean really, it is one good and well-organized group.

The Trip

I left work a little early (I had time off left from my planned trip to the DMV earlier in the week, which I used on Friday. The drive went well and I got into Lexington around 7PM whereas I had planned on arriving around 10PM. Ka-Ching!

I spent the evening playing Shadowrun. I thought I did not have my character, Ralf, with me. But by sheer luck, guess who I found in my box! YEAH! I would get to play Shadowrun with my own character and not a pregen! WOO HOO! I really like how he plays and with more Karma (I won't say XP), he gets more and more interesting. Definitely a tougher hombre, somewhat in spite of himself!

Ralf is based on Dave Chappelle's character Tyrone who is a crack addict. Though in the world of Shadowrun, that's a rather interesting proposition.

I got to play two Shadowrun missions with Michael-B as my GM, one in the evening and another one in the morning. I played with the very blasty Flamewitch and the ever-funny brawling Jim the Troll. A fun team, really. A few others joined us with pregens to complete the team. Fun.

In the afternoon, I initially planned to play some Adventurer's League adventure, however, they already had six players so I had to find something else to do until 5pm. At this point Chad needed a GM to run something for a few people.

He asked me "What do you want to run?" to which I invariably replied "Tyrants of Saggakar".

His face remained unconvinced (though it was the most honest answer I could give him).

He will say things.


Things that are not true.

But he found someone to run an adventure for him and get him out of a bind.

Later that day, I received a cool new ribbon! Yeah! I am the Big Cheese!

I then played an Adventure League adventure part of the latest Ravenloft-themed story. That storyline is rather interesting and makes me want to play more of it. My GM, Heather, was pretty good and I enjoyed myself quite a lot.

A minor event happened during that game where some guy was oddly rude for no reason. I let Karen, the organizer know about it later and the problem went away. Remember what I said earlier? Classy organization? Proof.

After the AL adventure ended, I went to see if Chad had any seats left (I did not want to play some more Shadowrun, tho I believe the option was still there). Turns out they had one seat left.

Poor Randy who had to deal with the inside party treachery of Ben Gunn, the cheatiest scallywag this side of the Inner Sea.

That swine even signed his name in a Hellknight fortress and painted up the sign of Besmara the Pirate Queen. He was working against the party to get us all killed all along! I did propose that we all jump him and shank him before he do something to us. But I'm certain that he had paid the others to spare his wretched life!


Which brings us Sunday. Final day of the con.

This was the day I was scheduled to run the first of Tyrants of Saggakar playtest. To save time and to be able to get a comparison, I chose to re-run an adventure that ran previously. So last year's Gencon special it was! It is an adventure that has a fair amount of lore and actually has a number of interesting encounters. So it would be definitely a valuable way to compare how the two run.

Thanks to Randy and his family for being there (being Sunday Morning, attendance is always sketchy). The game went well. I want to run a few more tests to see about game balance and the races, but the first test was a success.

One thing I noticed is that when you increase the challenge of a monster to face the party, the numbers from the DMG quickly scale up. I will have to experiment with this some more but I am not overly worried about this.

So let's thing over the con...

The Good

Lexicon has done quite a number of good things
- Getting events on the program was VERY easy
- On-site, Karen is an awesome RPG coordinator: knowledgeable, interested, and attentive. LOVE HER!
- They removed the dividing wall and made the RPG/tabletop room bigger.

The Improvable

Things the con could improve to be better
- The biggest issue I have with the con is how to purchase on-site tickets. To buy a pre-printed 2$ ticket, you had to go online (though there were supposedly tablets for that, I was never offered to use them, nor did I see them).
- With the dividing wall open, a lot of the open/board game tables were so close to each other that it was hard to go from the RPG section in the back to well... anywhere. Perhaps removing one row of these tables would give us fat gamers a way to walk to the bathroom without having to make long detours.

In the end

From the previous event, the con has made great strides. The only "real" negative point and where they did not improve was with the "go online to pay cash" thing. Annoying, but in the end definitely fixable.

Lexicon is definitely a convention I want to keep attending. I will definitely try to attend it again next year! Hopefully with the kiddos...


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