Showing posts with label GenCon52_2019. Show all posts
Showing posts with label GenCon52_2019. Show all posts

Monday, August 12, 2019

GenCon 2019 - Bloodborne and Dawn-of-Madness

Dawn of Madness Preview - Byron Leavitt game writer

I got sucked into Diemension Game's cooperative dungeon crawler Deep Madness.  Their follow up prequel promises to be as weird (hopefully less difficult), and a very different experience. Hints of this game 's art were shown on the Deep-Madness Kickstarter. Dawn of Madness will be Kickstarted in a few months (Fall 2019): check out the preview Kickstarter page.

Byron Leavitt, the lead writer for the game, demonstrated the prototype game via the storybook  "Emily's Realm".  I learned that this game plays more like a choose-your-own-adventure book on steroids than it does a dungeon crawler. It is a co-operative nightmare in which each player has their nightmares meshed with the others. The party is guaranteed a story ending based on decision and encounters, but the ending depends on which character is affected the most during gameplay. 

Instead of using lots of tiles to make a gameboard(like in Deep Madness) a single spider-web board with blank identifiers is reused; areas are identified/assigned locations based on the story (i.e., Emily's house). Time and actions are tracked with a ladder-like system (see Roman numeral track in below image with character chits).

Most appealing, is the way characters "level up"/devolve as they experience their mental issues. These even have various miniatures, so as Emily explores her past she may transform into some demon-like thing. There are several currencies that each represent mental parameters--I forget the specifics but recall one color being akin to anxiety, for instance.    


Image credits: Deep Madness Kickstarter update Aug 2019
Image credits: Deep Madness Facebook Photos



Check out our preview Kickstarter page at http://bit.ly/DoMPreview! It may be a late Dawn of Madness Friday, but we're coming back with a doozy! Here is our first video in a new series diving deep into Dawn of Madness before the Kickstarter launches in mid- to late-September, describing why Dawn of Madness is not just another board game: it is, instead, a horror experience in a board game. (Sorry for the choppy editing and the questionable quality, guys: I really wanted to get this out today, so I put it together over the course of a few hours.) More to come! #Kickstarter #boardgames #horror #survivalhorror #crowdfunding #miniatures #dawnofmadness
Posted by Diemension Games on Friday, August 9, 2019


Bloodborne CMON – Michael Shinall

As fans of the Bloodborne video game (and huge fans CMON's Zombicide games), my son and I went all-in on the Bloodborne Board Game Kickstarter. 

At GenCon we listened to co-designer Michael Shinall walk through the game.  

Keen-eyed readers may spot my son,







Sunday, August 11, 2019

Q&A with Anna Smith Spark - GenCon2019 Writer's Symposium


This May, 2019 I had the pleasure of interviewing Anna Spark Smith for BlackGate.com: Disgust and Desire: An Interview with Anna Smith Spark. Among the dark fantasy crowd, she is known as the Queen of Grimdark. The David Gemmell Awards shortlisted her The Court of Broken Knives. The sequel The Tower of Living and Dying continued the Empires of Dust trilogy (Harper Voyager US/ Orbit US/Can). The last installment called The House of Sacrifice is available Aug 13th! That's now.

Fortuitously, she was invited to the GenCon Writer's Symposium; GenCon is the world's largest tabletop gaming convention, this year luring >70,000 guests to Indianapolis, IN. I volunteer for that symposium and was granted a panel slot to extend the interview live. Thanks to Melanie Meadors and Kelly Swails for working the program and running a splendid symposium.

Despite well attend sessions throughout the convention, by the time 5pm rolled around Friday, our Q&A drew an intimate crowd (~10). We opened with a reading of her famous introductory chapter to The Court of Broken Knives. The notion of doing a reading was a bit impromptu, so we hadn't a tripod, a professional video recorder, or ability to tune-out the other sessions (thanks to audience member Dirk for stepping up to film). Anna Smith Spark graced us with reading the entire chapter (~10min), which left the room wanting her to just read for the full hour. See insert video. Her reading of the same chapter at a Goth City Festival 2018 is also on You Tube and is breathtaking.

Before I could even finish this post, new fan Michael Farrell found the YouTube recording and posted in the commentary: "this was the highlight of my Gen Con." Mine too. Also in the audience was John O'Neill, founder and editor of Blackgate.com (and Gotham Robot enthusiast). It was surreal to have him present along with Anna Smith Spark; we continued discussions over dinner. 

BTW, Anna Smith Spark is known for outrageous footwear, and she did not disappoint. Friday, she blessed us with the dragon shoes. 

More video snippets of the session may emerge as I decompress from an intense convention, but for now please listen in... read our interview Disgust and Desire: An Interview with Anna Smith Spark., and check out her series!




Saturday, August 10, 2019

GenCon - Dyscrasia Merchandise revealed - T Shirts & Mugs

Dyscrasia Fiction Merchandise now available via Zazzle

Check for discounts at Zazzle, they are always running so deal between 15-50% off!


Modeled by true friends and family at GenCon #52
Note: only the Helen's Daimones T-Shirt is available for the public


GenCon 2019 Writer's Symposium Behind the Scenes - Volunteering

This serves a snapshot scrapbook for the Writer's Symposium at Gen Con #52, 2019.  Every year in Indianapolis, it's a guaranteed blast of fun with authors, readers, editors, and gamers! Volunteering is a lot of work, but those who do get to hang out with a bunch of like-minded folk. Looking forward to seeing everyone next year. 







Trade Day - GenCon 2019 - Learning Financial Literacy Through Games

 "Is That The Best You Can Do?"



Free Market Kids' "Is That The Best You Can Do?" game is inspired to teach basics of financial literacy and negotiating skills, but it's fun whether or not you care about learning. It is as easy as Uno... but totally different. The games works with three people, but works best with four or more for the negotiations to get exciting. It is excellent for family gatherings, home schooling, or class settings. A match runs about 30-45min, but a single ~5min round can be fun and full of teachable moments.

Wed July 31st at Trade Day GenCon 2019, Free Market Kids demonstrated the game with ~17 librarians, game developers, and teachers. 




This post shows short clips of mini-rounds. In short, these demonstrate how easy the game is to pick up.  Negotiating can be fun... but it is most fun with abstract "Alternate Identities" and "Flying Cars" on the market.


Saturday, July 20, 2019

Gen Con - Q&A with Anna Smith Spark


The GenCon Writer's Symposium is fast approaching!

Coinciding with this is Anna Smith Spark's released of the third installment in the Empires of Dust: HOUSE of SACRIFICE!

Earlier this year I interviewed the Queen of Grimdark over on BlackGate.com  (May 2019):Disgust and Desire: An Interview with Anna Smith Spark

And in ~2weeks, I'll be moderating her Q&A session at Gen Con! Please join us, and bring your questions.


The whole Writer's Symposium is a blast. Check out the events: