Wednesday, April 6, 2011

AdeptiCon: Killzone Events Recap Outline

AdeptiCon. You may have heard of it. Killzone was there. Here is how the glory, the madness, the dynamism, the mayhem, the backstabbing, and the dice played out.

For the sake of clarity (my own) on the matter, I have broken the following posts into neat piles underneath which I have sorted distinct thematic categories, and upon which I have sprinkled several fine images from the weekend. Today’s post, “The Events,” will describe the broad nature and mechanics of each slot. Next, we will explore the game dynamic in AdeptiCon’s intense atmosphere, and finally the people and the tables themselves with a summary of my impressions/responses to it all.

First, let me say that blind panic is a tremendous motivator. The cards arrived from Superior POD Wednesday. I finished painting the tables Thursday morning, delivered them Thursday night. I got home around midnight Thursday, and was up again ready (three diapers later –the boys’ not mine) to go. The alarmingly efficient and organized folk from AdeptiCon (clearly, they have done this before) handed me the mission sheets Friday morning as well as the Tokens that had been made by the good folk at Flying Tricycle. I approached the tables with only the smallest trickle of sweat on my temple. I love it when a plan comes together.

The Events:
There were three events on the weekend, two Friday, and one on Sunday.

The first event on Friday got off to a bang. Even now it is difficult to find a decent and useful expression to describe exhilaration I felt to watch this monster that I had spent so long winding up bounce out into the world –watching the gamers lined up across 24 feet of contiguous table edges battling out, just brilliant. The event itself was wild and invigorating sandwiched, as it was, between the Crystal Brush on one side and the 400+ competitive 40K players on the other in the main hall. That’s a good spot by my reckoning, and the atmosphere like nothing I have known in this humble hobby.

…and immediately my improvisational skills were challenged. There were several “no shows,” which for some inexplicable reason I did not expect. Please don’t ask me why. I was caught totally flatfooted. Thankfully, there was also a corresponding level of interest from stragglers and many of the blank spots at tables were quickly filled. Of course, that was just the beginning.

Each event was designed to include at least four games, within which players would get to play on the most number of tables against the largest diversity of opponents. I had even done some maths (not my strong suit) to ensure that this was so. By the beginning of game three, we realized, scientifically, that maths really is not my thing. My dynamic was shot to hell in only two games.

No worries. We bounced back by simply letting the player’s pick what tables they wanted to play most. This worked out brilliantly, as players tended to have strong feelings toward one table or another and were thus afforded the chance to play where they would. Naturally, there was one hiccup that I will discuss next post (the astute will see the beginning of a pattern here). This also allowed for some tremendous thematic matchups –two in particular that stand out, DE in the Arena and antithetical DH forces in the same. That’s the stuff of which Killzone is made.

Frozen Joe and I spent about an hour working on the fix for this second event …but found (once again at game three) we had failed utterly. I still cannot fathom how this happened. Once again, players worked it out themselves –which is fine, of course, for an informal event like this one, but bothersome to me only because I had tried so very hard to figure it all out. Alas.

I must also say that the second event was challenging. The 7pm-Midnight slot was squeezed with very tired people, myself included, some of whom had been acting as Judges for the 40K tournament, and others who had already enjoyed hours upon hours of tabletop merriment, and one or two of whom were nowhere to be seen by the time we finished. Just as well, I bought Gutgrope and the boys to ring it up for a game or two. Next year, I might rethink this slot.

The final event on Sunday, by comparison, was teeming with surprisingly spry and eager Special Operations Groups (more than one of whom was markedly hungover –making that enthusiasm all the more notable). Sunday went brilliantly. Again, we had a few no-shows, but I had at least fixed the rotation schematic… and I am pleased to report that this worked wonderfully, mostly because I did not rely entirely on mathematics to accomplish the feat. I simply spent an hour or two making lists, drawing diagrams, and testing them on scraps of paper. Joe and I had tried something similar on Friday, but I took it a few steps further this time just to be certain. Brian 1. Maths 2. I will call that a draw (see: maths). 


GDMNW said...

It sounds like one amazing weekend all round. You really came up trump with the tables!

As for organising things. It's not easy and people who complain have clearly never tried to sort out a decent sized event themselves.

Good job!

Gotthammer said...

Ah, so awesome looking and sounds like a great series of games - mucho kudos to you, B, and thanks for sharing so many pictures with those of us who couldn't make it :)

sonsoftaurus said...

If I could have made Adepticon, this definitely would have been my main draw. Glad to hear it went mostly well, and that the inevitable hiccups were overcome.

Look forward to hearing and seeing more!

The Inner Geek said...

I sure wish I'd been there. Everyone makes it sound like such a good time. And while I have no interest in tournament play, KillZone would have been an awesome option!

Brian said...

@ GDMNW. Thank you. I must admit that the learning curve was steep.

@ Goth. Cheers. There's more to come yet. I spent ages making these things and figure it would be rude to drop them too quickly. ha.

@ Sons. next year. next year. make it happen.

@ The Inner Geek. Tournaments are not my scene either but AdeptiCon is in a class of its own, with so much more to offer than the competitive avenue. So much more. Next year?

Sanguinary Ty said...

As a participant in the first round of games on Friday... all I can say is AMAZING. The atmosphere, the tables, the organization of Brian and Joe, it all came together as one of the most memorable gaming memories of my 40k days. Top notch B, hoping it's back for another year next year.

Zero said...

I was there on Saturday, and I got to look at your boards close up while they were leaned against the wall. Beautiful work, and I'm glad it worked out!

The Independent Characters said...


The kill zone tables were truly epic! The pics look nice - but there is no comparison to seeing them in person. Truly awesome sir!

The Dark Templar said...

Sounds like a fantastic and totally mental weekend. Kinda miss the madness from these sorts of gaming weekends but kinda don't too, hehe.

Congratulations on a fantastic gaming board – looks the absolute business. Organising large scale events is never easy and it's almost impossible to cover all the variables, so I tip my hat to your (collective) sterling efforts.

Skarvald the Troll-faced said...

Brian, my friend, it was truly a pleasure to see you again. It has been a year! You have done a phenomenal job and inspired many. I was able to get in one game with someone else's SOG, but man was it a blast. I mean it. You probably heard me yelling after making my successful saves with Joe's Deathwatch team. It was spectacular. Felt like I was the star in a movie and all the little details fit so well. Expect to see a post over at Wolves for the Wolf God about my experience, PLUS some pictures I took.

I also want some of those smoke explosion thingies or at least a tutorial, damn it! :)


Brian said...

@ Ty. Brilliant meeting you. Seeing as you're really not that far away, I suggest we find a way to get a game or two before AdpetiCon 2012. How bout it?

@ Zero. Cheers. I hope you enjoyed them when they weren't vertical as well. Ha.

@ The IC. too kind. too kind. Thank you very much for your support.

@ Dark Templar. Cheers. I know that you are on hiatus from one particular aspect of the hobby, but I haven't forgotten the notion that we might get another game sometime down the road...

@ Skarvald. It was fantastic to see you as well. I'll just have to find a way to get myself out to Palatine for a few informal games. Also, I'd be happy to help with the project at your FLGS (same place, correct). Let me know. I still have a deck or two tucked away that I would be happy to donate as prizes or game support... etc.