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posted by [personal profile] cathyr19355 at 09:40pm on 27/09/2009 under
Okay, no more screwing around. It's been nearly two full months since WBC ended; time to finish the saga.

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posted by [personal profile] cathyr19355 at 10:07pm on 14/09/2009 under ,
Yes, I know it's been over a month since WBC ended, but life keeps getting in the way of finishing my account of the event. Unfortunately, it's going to do so again. I'm coming down with something, so I don't quite feel up to finishing my saga tonight. For those of you who were curious, I apologize. For those of you who no longer care, I'll put all of this under an lj-cut.

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Mood:: 'satisfied' satisfied
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posted by [personal profile] cathyr19355 at 08:37pm on 11/08/2009 under ,
The tale of my week at WBC--continued.

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posted by [personal profile] cathyr19355 at 09:58pm on 09/08/2009 under ,
I just returned from a week spent ignoring all of my problems by attending the World Board Gaming Championships in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. [livejournal.com profile] esrblog and I first attended WBC last year and loved it, so we decided to avoid the cost and hassle of attending the Montreal Worldcon and went to WBC instead.

For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, WBC is a gaming convention for people who like to play strategy games of all types. Some of the games played are military strategy games, like one of [livejournal.com profile] esrblog's favorite, Commands and Colors: Ancients, but lighter "Euro" board games such as Empire Builder, Puerto Rico and Power Grid also abound. It is possible to find people to play a friendly game of just about every board game ever invented, but the main event at WBC are tournaments in a large variety of board games both old and new.

This year, [livejournal.com profile] esrblog and I took pains to talk WBC up to those of our friends who are interested enough in board gaming to be likely to go, and as a result never had any trouble finding people to game with. We'd invited one of our Michigan sword-fighting buddies to come out to Pennsylvania and crash with us while we were at WBC, and our friends Craig and Carrie were there, as well a number of friends we know from live-action roleplaying, and some of the gang who frequents our favorite game store, The Games Keep, also showed up, as well as Even [livejournal.com profile] pmat and [livejournal.com profile] shakati drove out to check out the scene on Friday.

So we had an excellent time overall, even though we did not win any tournaments, and despite the fact that the restaurant food most easily available in the Lancaster area is the kind of heavy, greasy "good ol' American" stuff I've been trying to avoid for the last 15 years. The week is kind of a blur, but moments do stand out. For those people on my friends list who don't want my graphic account of My Week to hog their Friends Pages, I'll put my blow-by-blow account under an lj-cut.

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Mood:: 'tired but content' tired but content
cathyr19355: Stock photo of myself (Default)
Now it's September, and the summer is culturally over.

But it's not too late to talk about what I did Labor Day Weekend, and since that is thematically related to my August vacation, I can talk about that too, in the same post! Woo!

I spent Labor Day Weekend at a small gaming relaxacon run by some friends of ours called TCEP. Specifically, "TCEP 15--The Elder Party," in honor of the fact that it's an election year. Basically, it just means that my friends make arrangements with a hotel in Maryland for some function space and a special room rate, and invite 40-60? of their friends to attend and spend three days, hanging out and gaming. We had a splendid time having dinner expeditions with friends we haven't seen in a while and playing our favorite Euro (and other) Games. I managed to fit in games of Puerto Rico, Ticket to Ride--Europe, Race for the Galaxy, Power Grid, Zombies! (with all 7--or is it 8? expansions), and learned a new game--Agricola--during the course of the weekend.

The World Boardgaming Championships(“WBC”), which is where [livejournal.com profile] esrblog and I spent the first week of August, was a much different experience. For one thing, it is a much bigger event--several thousand people attended, and it goes on for nearly 6 days. So there were many fewer people there whom we knew, and we ended up spending most of our spare time hanging out with them (thanks, Ken and Craig!). Moreover, though you could find someone for a casual game, most of the conference was set up to provide people with tournament opportunities. You played three or four "heats" of a game with other people, and based on your win-loss statistics, you would make, or not make, the next stage in the competition (semifinals). I played heats in Ticket to Ride, Puerto Rico, "Empire Builder" (which included all of the Mayfair crayon-rail games), Race for the Galaxy, and Vegas Showdown.

I made it into the Puerto Rico semifinals (but failed to win that round, coming in only second) and narrowly missed the semis for Race for the Galaxy. In just about every other game I played in every other heat, I came in...third. (Except for one dreadful Vegas Showdown game where I misremembered an important rule about income and barely managed to crawl in at next-to-last.) Fortunately, all the players were good winners and losers, and behaved civilly throughout. So the tournament heats were fun, at least, even if I didn't do as well as I might have hoped.

On the negative side, we stayed at the Pass/Fail Passport Inn, a low-end motor inn whose only virtue was its price ($50 per night plus tax). Its claim to having Internet was a joke, and the air conditioning barely managed to make the rooms uniformly cool, damp and musty throughout our stay. In addition, in an effort to spare my right Achilles tendon (limped upon throughout Sword Camp, and very unhappy), I managed to sprain my *left* Achilles tendon, making my limp noticeably worse and multiplying my discomfort. Both sides are finally getting better now--but only because I've been avoiding stairs as much as possible for the past month, and limiting my walking. Ugh.

So I had a lot of good gaming this August, if nothing else. Let's see what September brings.
Mood:: 'pleased' pleased
Music:: "Battle for Wesnoth" soundtrack (the game is open in another screen)
location: home

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