Monday, April 10, 2017

Granite Games Summit 2017

Granite Games Summit 2017 or G2S as it has been called is a regional board game focused convention hosting it's first multi day event in Nashua, NH - about an hour drive north of Boston, the first week of April. This weekend was home to 300-350 of like minded friends and strangers who became friends.

Until recently, I usually only attended regional cons within a short drive of my home in Ohio.  This one most closely resembled Buckeye Game Fest in Columbus in September.  The one notable difference at BGF has a gaming lending library run by the Columbus Area Boardgaming Society (CABS), who also provides the library at Origins.  The G2S library is mostly tables of games owned by local attendees with games they are willing to share above the table and their private collection, often items they are selling or trading, below.  I played several games by borrowing them this way since I flew with a small carry on bag didn't bring much with me.

I started flying to conventions when I started going to Board Game Geek con in November.  Changes in my usual convention plans this year, G2S's proximity to my birthday and the people I knew would be there, were all good excuses to fly to this one.  

Ballroom 1 of 2

My flights were a little messed up due so I wasn't able to connect in Boston with my friend Ruth, pod-caster on the 5 by, but we did connect with fellow pod-casters Eric and Bill, and soon to be new friends Molly and Mike to play our planned epic "every expansion super blinged out" game of Eclipse.  

We knew this was going to be long, but oh boy!  With breaks and changing into our fancy dress up, one of the con themes for Friday night, we were at that table for 6-7 hours.  Eric and I took a break for fancy dress Coconuts during the break.

We explored, expanded, I was exploited and then I finally exterminated the center core aliens and took the win.  It was pretty epic. The photo below is the first time Eric and I faced off in combat.  I'm the pink space thingies.

Even though it was pretty late my buddies asked me to teach Terraforming Mars, a game they know I love.  This was Eric, Dan C. Matt and myself.  I lost, and we ended up in bed at 230 or so.

Since Eric and I are on a podcast together and interact a lot on the internet, so we decided on splitting a room, which is great because you get to know someone better that way.  I don't sleep much and he got up with me and we tried out a new tile game Castles of Caledale, I brought per his request, during breakfast.  I found Dan C. and we planned to meet later.  I played a quick game of Harlem Globetrotters from 1971 w Moderator Chris, with what appeared to be plans for their show later that day.  

By then crowds started to appear and we played a favorite, Suburbia, with Ryan, Dan N., Matt and I.  I came in dead last.  Dan C. And I had played Glory to Rome before, this was our rematch with his wife joining us.  He was very close to a win when I snatched it from him.

I helped Dan C. and his wife learn Clank! But had to leave to watch the last live recording of a Flip the Table podcast.  As a long time fan of the show, and as I frequently interacted with them on social media I was excited to meet them all in person, and see the show.  It was as fun as expected.  I left with a box of donuts, a game from the vault an 10,000 points!

Eric was desperate for some "real" food.  We grabbed Kimberly, a con organizer and local, to take us someplace good.  We had a great meal, and laughs, and heard some challenges of running a con.  Kimberly admitted there were challenges with the venue and our quick and carry food options were not like they expected.  They were better than nothing, which is the case at many small cons I go to.

Returning re energized we got in a game of Worlds Fair 1893.  Then, Ryan and his wife Erin returned with Millennium Blades to teach me for my request. This was quite a handful as tired as I was, but Ryan is a good teacher and we had a good group to play with.

Eric brought some pod-casting recording equipment and several of us joining in.  Jessica and I from the show saw each other a lot but never actually got in a game, so I agreed to one more.  We scanned the library and saw Yspahan.  Our mutual friend speaks of it, um... often and I've been meaning to play so she taught Eric and I.  It was pretty fun.

I got to bed a little earlier, saw Mike and Eric at breakfast and we played HUE as my real last game of the con. I said more goodbyes and headed to the airport.

So should you go to G2S next year? 

If you are regional? Definitely, with out a doubt! It is well organized, in a nice space, great library, local food options, reasonable costs and amazing people attending.

Am I?  Probably not, unless I want to take off more time before and after to rest.  I'm typing this on the return flight and I'm pretty beat - this is a hard one for me to get to.  I played 12 games (now one was 6+ and one was 2.5 hrs), but had so much fun with those people.  I have regional cons, in fact I skipped one to go to this one.  That one is much smaller and pales by comparison.  Now take it for granite (you know I couldn't get thru this without a pun), I say this about lots of cons and end up going back...

So in general - look to your regional cons they are a blast - don't feel like you are missing out by not attending the "big cons".  No, this doesn't have the craziness of a Gen Con but it does have all the fun of Origins or BGG.

So, congratulations to the G2S organizers for their first successful multiple day event.  Thanks everyone​ for making me feel invited, special and fun to be with. 

Games Played:

  • Coconuts
  • The Harlem Globetrotters Game
  • Clank!: A Deck-Building Adventure
  • World's Fair 1893
  • HUE
  • Yspahan
  • Millennium Blades
  • Suburbia
  • Castles of Caladale
  • Terraforming Mars
  • Eclipse
  • Glory to Rome

Some Friends:

1 comment:

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