Sunday, March 22, 2009

TABScon Recap

Wheeee! As some of you know I'm a high school teacher and I spent this last week (March Break) doing a bang-up-A-plus job of being Super Dad! Why? It was earning brownie points so I could spend the whole of yesterday from 9am to almost 9pm at TABScon!

TABScon is the quarterly gaming meet-up of the Toronto Area Boardgamers Society. I was alerted to the existence of the group by a TPBF blog follower "Peloton" -- his handle on the 'geek. I hooked up with TABbers and Peloton at Niagara Boardgaming Weekend (see here and here). TABScon is basically 12 hours of non-stop gaming fun. Now I didn't play ASL but it was played there and I've semi-planned to meet up with Peloton either on VASSAL or F2F as soon as our schedules permit in the coming months. I think most ASLers are wargaming generalists anyways so I'll chat about my experiences.

I got a chance to playtest L2's upcoming "bugs vs. mechs" wargame On the Bounce with developer Lembit Tohver (he's done a fair bit of stuff kids!). It was a good chance to see what a wargame looks like in mid-development with non-production bits and rules in "flux". Here's the CSW forum link. Here's a pic (complete with the Hand of Lembit!):

Next, I had a chance to learn the World at War system with "Kozure". Anyone who follows the game on the 'geek probably knows that name. Kozure has done a lot of work with alternate/variant counters and scenarios, not the least of which feature Canadian military vehicles and troops! Woot! Interested parties should check out the session report here on the 'geek.

Next I played some Game of Thrones LCG. Being a fan of the fiction I thought the game had promise but the 4-player game with the Starter Decks was s l o w. Lastly, I jumped into a five hour game of Friedrich in the last half hour as France had to leave. Great fun game. Always a good time. Here's a pic of Peloton's hand before he manipulates the board:

Good times! The people at TABS are all super nice and super friendly. If you're interested in joining up check out their website and see what events you can attend.

Now, how does this relate to ASL? Other than seeing ASL being played (as it was at TABScon - one game!), attending events like this gets you out there and networking. Form connections with other wargamers (they are out there and sometimes next door!). These are your best bets for finding ASL Life Partners! Check out gaming conventions in your area -- plan to attend and play. Hook up with potential opponents over the 'net on forums and such. Get out there and get serious in order to have fun -- oh delicious irony. Learning ASL is a lot more fun with a friend to do it with.

Keep a positive attitude and I think you'll get some positive results. Expand your horizons! Do it for the scrub!


Andy said...

Hey! That was me playing ASL at TABSCon! I played T4 (Shklov's Labor Lost) and U17 (Resistance at Chabrehez) with JeffW from the TABS list. I won as the Russians in round 1 and lost as the Belgians in round 2, but even though I lost, my honour was preserved by one first-line Belgian squad that kept killing every German who came after it, until they were snowed under at the end. Good times. Maybe we can play a scenario at the next one?

scrub said...

Hi Andy! Peloton and I went by your game a few times but as newbs we were frightened by the sheet number of counters we witnessed.

Just kidding!

Actually I'd love a session of full ASL sometime during a TABScon!