JP On Gaming

Saturday, August 19, 2023

Gencon 2023 After Action Report Part 6

Parts 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Next Year

Looking at next year and the result of this year's adventure, I can announce the overall theme of next year's Gencon mini-campaign.

War with the Titans

War is a fertile ground for adventure and with so many settings to play with, I think we will have some very interesting plots coming. It is still early but having a direction to work from is very interesting, especially this early in the process.

Once again, I plan to challenge and play with the formula of tabletop RPG. Perhaps some wargaming elements?


My buddy Alex

Trying to put a neat bow on this year's Gencon is not easy. There are so many things to cover before the end.

- The FOE GMs have been asking me to run higher-level games to which I must say I am somewhat reticent as I value our games as being welcoming to all newcomers and we get a LOT of new players (both FOE and 5e new players). If I write or run level 7, training wheels are off and I will hurt people. Bad. That said, I want to leave the idea here to see what the community wants.

- Seeing our success this year, I have been thinking of increasing the number of games offered. This is twofold. First, I am thinking of going up to five tables per slot. This would require a MUCH greater involvement from GMs (ergo: I'd need AT LEAST four gms to accomplish that). Whether this would be more tables of the same adventures or extra adventures remains TBD. This is one thought that both terrifies and attracts me a lot.

- Partial follow-up of the previous, if you are willing to write and run your own FOE adventure, let me know as soon as possible and we can make that happen. This year, Thor and Bill wrote and ran their own adventure this year (Thor did it last year too)

- Two sidekicks made good this year: Kanato the samurai and Rin the martial artist. Be prepared to see them in future Ozaka adventures.

My new buddy Ray - This year, was the year I had the most visitors. Of course, Alex FG came by, but also Brandon-B on his scooter, and I saw JP2 give a quick wave. I forget others now, but don't worry I will remember after this gets published.

- One issue that caused consternation was the naming (and renaming) of specials, I may take a different approach next year. But... It will be difficult to get away from clever puns and double-entendre title...

- For the first time this year, I had my adventures bound in a spiral book. It was such a good idea and I was easily able to carry my adventures and specials without doing my typical spread-and-lose method. I will do that again next year. It was a little pricier, but well worth it.

- My 3d printer worked through the year to print the many models used in adventures by the GMs. I gave them baggies of miniatures as a small thank you.

- I will be producing a Narrative Kickoff before Christmas. This will be a short story that will bridge the time between Gencons 2023 and 2024...

Farewell JD

JD and ActionManThe passing of JD Conrad earlier this year, affected me. My good friend had moved on. By then, Gencon was turned in and much written already.

I wanted to do something for him.

So I did a small gesture: I altered the specials to include one table of Rhym characters. Thus, Rhym lived again! It was fun to write for that setting once again and the Rhym crew was perhaps the first really well-balanced group of Iconics.

Big Thanks to Logan and Sicquan for taking on that crew.

I was touched by the respect of the community for JD and his works. I don't think I was able to ask that of people without my voice breaking. I am writing this with wet eyes.

Thanks my friend for giving us Rhym.

Rhym will very likely return next year on the FOE program.


General thank yous: Gencon, the Marriott, city of Indy, and Dennys.

So many people to thanks, as usual. My first specific one goes to all attendees who woke up early, stayed up late, or both. For giving us your time and your confidence to entertain you with unique events.

It is also so pleasing to see returning faces, who come play with us, year after year, and the many who have tried to get FOE tickets only to see them disappear in an instant. I always want to grow but want to do so with quality GMs, products, and adventures.

Next, I must thank the FOE GMS: Adam, Bill, Brandon, Logan, Marissa, Rebecca, Sicquan, Steve, Thor, and Will. You guys really made everything sound great and come alive. I said it before but your personalities and skills crafted the game experience around my framework. I said it many times, but I really get a kick out of listening to you all and to the twists you create. I could not have done it without you. My thanks and love.

Another set of thanks goes to all those who heard me gripe about my adventures either sucking, falling flat, or being unimaginative, OR that I was stuck in the writing process. I would never have gotten it all done without your insight and rubber ducky powers. ActionMan, Brandon, Florence-M, Florent-F, and Will a big thanks to you guys.

This year, my workload was lightened particularly by Bill and Thor who both created awesome adventures that complemented the FOE offering and gave alternative approaches to the setting and new ideas. Bill's site-based investigation and Thor's dungeoncrawl helped craft a very complete slate of adventures, none of which were similar to the others. And you took my odd comments about adding things (green crystal) in stride. You guys rock. Now you've set your own bar pretty high. (Just sayin')

Thanks go to ActionMan who had to hear all about the awesomeness but not begin able to attend. Don't worry bud, you'll be joining us soon enough.

Thanks to my wife, Julie who tolerated my late nights as I tried to get it all done. And the frustrated groans of writer's block. And the online chats at odd hours.

Parts 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

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