Much as I figured I wouldn't be able to post much during the convention. The auction Friday night ran from 7:15pm to about 2:15am. Its becoming quite a marathon and I have to figure out a way to shorten up the time it takes. However, it was a pretty successful auction overall as people seemed to have more money to spend than they have had over the last few years. Once again no one bothers to take pictures of the auction and the wall of games that faces me when I start selling stuff off. My first auction as an auctioneer was at Genghis Con VI so this was my 28th appearance. For a lot of those years we were doing two auctions a show, one on Friday and one on Sunday but that quickly became overwhelming. I have done all the auctions at Tacticon as well so coming up will be my 24th appearance there. I have also put in guest appearances at other conventions, Origins three times, GenCon twice, LA twice (forget specifically which LA cons I was at though) and every Reapercon (except the first, because there was no auction at the first one). Reapercon may be my favorite auction because there is no money involved, you can only use Reaper Bucks and all the stuff coming up for auction is provided by Reaper so the reality is that the auction is "free". Its a ton of fun. In fact I highly recommend going to Reaper Con at least once just to experience a very different type of game convention. Helping with the auctions and being an auctioneer is one element of a game convention that I really like doing. Probably because all that attention is focused on me and no one can escape my bad jokes.
Most of Saturday was spent getting entries into the painting competition and then 4 hours of judging. Everything is entered into specific categories like Single Fantasy Miniature or Dioramas. Within a category we award medals; gold, silver, bronze or certificates of merit. If a person has multiple entries in a category then the judges will discuss which piece will be judged. After this there is no more discussion and judges award a score between 0 - 4 (0 being try again, and 4 being gold). The sheets with the scores are turned in and put into a spreadsheet. For each entry being judged the high score and the low score are thrown out and the remaining three added together to get a result from 0 - 12. Judges are also allowed to put a + or - next to their score indicating that they are willing to go up or down a step if that puts them more in line with what other judges are indicating. The scores break out as follows:
11-12 - Gold
8-10 - Silver
5-7 - Bronze
2-4 - Certificate of Merit
After the entries are judged, we select the category winners (sometimes that's easy sometimes its hard). From the Category winners we select Best in Show, Best in Competition and Best Theme (Mongol). We have a separate category that we call Master Class, this is the class that people who have won previous Best in Show awards, GW Slayer Swords, that kind of thing. Typically Best in Show, at Genghis Con, comes out of this category, so we created what we call Best in Competition, the best non-masterclass entry. The winner of this gets moved into the Master Class category and hopefully gets pushed even harder to bring in his/her best work. The quality of the entries continues to climb every show, its almost mind boggling.
There were lots of painting classes on Saturday and Sunday as well, followed by getting everything packed up and headed back to the house.
I took my painting slave....er guest of honor, Marike Reimer, skiing on Monday at Keystone. We had a great time but the wind yesterday made it really cold. Still feeling the effects of that today, some muscles are loudly complaining about how hard I skied. I have skied since I was 12 and I'm very good, did a little amateur racing and so I tend to attack the hill pretty aggressively and I'm getting a little old to be quite that aggressive anymore. My knee was letting me know that towards the end of the day.
Anyway, it was a terrific show, one of the best we have done and they only seem to be getting better. Genghis Con is growing again, I think the final attendance numbers were between 1900 and 2000 (starting to push my attendance numbers when I ran it) which is really good to see.
Life is short, break the rules. Forgive quickly, kiss slowly. Love truly, laugh uncontrollably and never regret anything that makes you smile. - Samuel Longhorne Clemens (Mark Twain)