Monday, May 28, 2007

Enfilade A Big Success

Enfilade 2007 is over. I left early Friday for the convention site at the Red Lion Hotel in Olympia. I have a few responsibilities at the convention, and the most important is setting up pre-registration and the registration desk. It's a big job. I spend about five hours in preparation before the convention, assembling lanyards, and completing pre-reg packets. This year we had some 110 pre-registrants, so it was time consuming.

We had more work to do before the convention officially opened at 1:00 as we matched badges with lanyards. I had a lot of help from committed convention regulars--Mark and Joe Waddington, Arthur Brooking, Dale Mickel and Scott Murphy. They did all the hard work of matching pre-registration packets with badges, t-shirts and caps. They also managed the initial run through of early registration for events. They did a great job. It allowed me to help with other issues, and even let me do a bit of early shopping.

The rest of the day and evening went wonderfully well. I participated in Dave Schueler and Shawn McEvoy's Thunderboats! game. Thunderboats! is a hydroplane racing game that draws extensively from Dave's Golden Age Air Racing game. Shawn is a high-end resin aircraft kit manufacturer and has produced hydroplane kits and models for the Hydroplane Museum. Last year he began making smaller scale models for this game, and he had six painted hydros for Friday night's game. The game was so popular I actually had to sit out the first heat. I did watch some though. Dave added random event cards to mix of results for pressing in corners or redlining the engine, which added a lot to the game. Most added hydro "incident" flavor, such as going airborne and suffering damage, but a helped a bit such as increased power or cursing another driver. It was a lot of fun, and I was able to finish first with lots of very good die-rolling. All of the players ordered hydroplanes from Shawn, so I'm looking forward to receiving them later this summer.

Saturday was very busy. I helped keep the registration desk rolling, and ran games in each of the three game periods--never again. The first game was Gulf Patrol. Dave Schueler and I ran this in the morning. It includes ships from the US Navy, the United Arab Emirates, the Iranian Navy and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Each group has separate victory conditions, that mostly involve keeping open the sea lanes through the Straits of Hormuz, and safeguarding territorial waters. The Revolutionary Guard is the wild card who stir things up and precipitate action. In this game the RG demanded to search all vessels in the shipping lanes and opened fire leading to a general missile tossing hoo-hah. The only player to come out unscathed was the UAE, as they set out to generally clean up the wreckage from the other three players. Fun. We used Bulldogs Away for the rules, and they worked quite well.

In the afternoon period David Sullivan and I ran our two Roman armies from different eras in a WRG 6th edition game. It was a difficult game to run, and I wasn't particularly satisfied by the outcome. We just need to play the game some more and become more expert on the difficult to follow, difficult to remember rules set.

In the evening Mark Waddington and I ran our Sword and the Flame on Mars Game. The scenario is called Mechanical Madness, and we've run it twice. Mark did a super job of upgrading the terrain. We believe it was easily the most popular game at the convention, and it was over subscribed by many, many players. It won overall best of show, and I hope to write more about Mark's incredible talent as a model builder in a later post.

Sunday was a bit more leisurely. I hosted the annual membership meeting which went well--maybe reasonably well would be a better description. I played in the DBA Open tournament, and had a lot of fun. I drew Doug Hamm as my first opponent. He had the Toltec-Chichmecs against my beloved Italian Ostrogoths, and shot down five knights in the first game. I died like a dog 5-0. I had a little more success against Andy Hooper's Trapezuntine Byzantines. I won 2G-0, and I actually got in a second game with Andy while we were waiting for the next round to begin. I love playing with Andy. He's a good player, has a lot of great insight into the game and period history, and isn't totally wrapped around winning and losing (I could do better with this.) My last game was against Henry Thompson. I've known Henry for a very long time and it was great to play him. He had Seleucids. I was able to dodge instant death from his elephants and shot my way to a 3G-1G victory. A tough day for generals.

All in all a great covention experience, except I was a little too busy on Saturday. I'm going to try to limit myself to running two games next year--neither on the same day.

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