This week we sit down with Matt and Barbara Allen to discuss the industry news which mainly comes out of BGG.Con 2016. We start by talking about Matt’s favorite game of the con, Lorenzo Il Magnifico, then talk Star Wars Destiny, Tiny Epic Quest, and Clank! We visit Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle, and Fate of Akalon: Tribes.
Ryan then questions why we would travel to a convention, and we talk a bit more about the why, as if we needed a reason.
We then get back to talking games, starting with The Daedalus Sentence, a cooperative game in a massive box. Ryan brings up Cottage Garden and cats, and we wander from there over to A Feast for Odin. Power Grid the Card Game is explained, and we talk about not playing Great Western Trail. Ryan then moves us to talk about Roll Player, another game we haven’t yet played.
Kingdom Death Monster 1.5 is newly on Kickstarter and getting plenty of press. Some predict it will become the most successful Kickstarter project ever.
Finally, Ryan starts a conversation about culling our collections, the subject of the first few articles in the most recent edition of Counter Magazine, issue 74. You can find the most recent issue (and previous issues) at boardgamegeekstore.com
SaltCON is a board game convention for families, gamers, and game designers. This convention is quickly becoming the preeminent board game convention of the Intermountain West. SaltCON happens each year during the first weekend in March near Salt Lake City, Utah. In 2016, SaltCON added more space, regional tournaments, and more games to give away, including over 100 play-to-win games. The total attendance this year was 1142 people, up 37% over last year.
The Meeple Nation Podcast was at SaltCON again in force. We ran social games each day, including Ultimate Werewolf, Two Rooms and a BOOM!, and Live Codenames. We love the social games and many of the players came back the second day to play with us. We must have done it right. The same player won both Live Codenames sessions, which means he was on the same wavelength as Ryan, who created the clues. Ryan is not sure if he should be scared or if he’s ready to start a new podcast with a new co-host.
Our game of Ultimate Werewolf was one of the best games Nathan has ever witnessed. The discussion was rife with accusations and outright attacks. Pleas of innocence were abundant. The first game with 15 gamers lasted almost a full hour before the werewolves were finally sniffed out.
We also played six games of Deception: Murder in Hong Kong, one of our new perennial favorites. We had little trouble finding investigators. Paige, Aaron, Sydney, half of HUGG, Trent, Michael, and Matt. With twelve players, we had a surprising number of accurate guesses in the first round of the game. Our forensic scientists demonstrated some mad clue-giving skills.
We recorded a podcast live in front of an audience with guests Ryan Bruns of Mayday Games, Ben Hilliard from Daedalus Productions, and Claudine Finlay and Julie Balazs from HUGG. We talked about attending conventions and being prepared to attend the big one. We spoke about attending from a gamer perspective as well as from that of a game company. Some good advice all around. Also, Brent was finally famous enough to be interviewed on Meeple Nation.
The convention was largely focused on open play with a “hot games” area and an Envoy room where volunteers taught the play-to-win games. Every day was packed with dozens of scheduled events, including panels, tournaments, and roleplaying, which ran continuously in a dedicated room with 306 participants.
The Ion Award, an annual board game design contest, was judged and prizes were awarded. Board games donated by game stores and game companies were given away. The grand prize went to a Meeple Nation listener. Dave Bremer won 504 and The Gallerist. Great job. Nathan won a few duds, but at least he won something.
We even managed to play a few games along the way. I’d call that a success. We are already looking forward to next year. If you live anywhere in the Intermountain West you should definitely check out SaltCON in 2017.
I travel a few times a year for work to another state or sometimes another country. I always take games with me, although they rarely get played due to lack of time, energy, or opponents. Baseball Highlights 2045 has been to El Salvador twice, and a few other games have made similar trips. I was… Continue Reading
Meeple Nation participated in an Extra Life event last weekend the NUGG, the Northern Utah Gaming Group. We got together to raise money for charity, specifically for Primary Children’s Hospital in SLC. Our fearless emperor Brent actually coordinated the whole event, which I thought it was a smashing success. We had over 80 people attend… Continue Reading
We are participating in a November 6-7, 2015 Extra Life event, where we board game to support Primary Children’s Hospital. This hospital serves 85000 kids a year including 1200 new heart patients and over 900 children with cancer. Please consider donating at our Extra-Life page at http://extra-life.org/team/boardgame/ Continue Reading