Thursday, April 2, 2015

AdeptiCon: General Thoughts

This accurately expresses my feelings about going to AdeptiCon
This year was pretty huge for AdeptiCon. They moved it to a much larger hotel with a lot more in Schaumburg. I don't really know my Chicago suburbs but it seemed pretty much the same; tons of traffic, lots of tolls, not bad for restaurants.
We decided to go down Wednesday again this year and it worked out really well. It is nice to get in an afternoon of relaxing before a big con and all the hustle and bustle. We went over and got checked in, checked out the Toledo game store out in the hall and then took a spin through the vendor room. It was pretty sweet getting there Wednesday as we got to get into the hall first thing Thursday morning (awesome decision, AdeptiCon).

The vendor room seemed a little squished this year - it would be nice if they took about ten yards more of the 40k room for it next year to add another row. I have to say that I am really, really, really glad that AdeptiCon is growing. Going from basically a GW game fan weekend to a true wargaming weekend really reflects the current market more than ever.

It was awesome to walk through the vendor hall and see every different game out there. With the advent of the internet, Kickstarter, and easier manufacturing in China we as gamers have never had a better time to participate in our hobby.

I enjoyed visiting Privateer Press and picking up a Scarab swarm. They also had Ruin (Khador character Warjack), which I'm sure they sold a ton of. The guys there are always top notch super nice dudes who really seem to want to show everyone how much they love the game.

How grimdark is this quarry? We saw this on the way
We visited Hawk Wargames as our first stop on Thursday when the doors opened. Will and I both picked up new commanders and I picked up the amazing Thunderstorm model for my Resistance. They had the new 1.1 command cards as well. It was pretty cool talking to HawkSimon about the game, how they're doing, and what will happen in the near future. They had a ton of display models with the studio scheme that really helped sell their game.

Resistance Thunderstorm
After that I hit the Warlord Games booth. It was their first time at AdeptiCon this year and I could see all the people walking through showing a ton of interest. 28mm will always draw the eye more than other scales, and WW2 is a very interesting setting for a wargame, so it is an easy transition for 40k gamers. 

Andrew was awesome and we talked quite a bit about my adoration for WLG and Bolt Action. I picked up a Finnish infantry box set to start a new force for 2015 after I finish painting my Slovaks. They're a very characterful army with a ton of special rules... should be fun.

I also picked up some Saxons from Footsore Miniatures for Saga. I met Bill, who made the Fury model that people who played in the Bolt Action tournament received. He is an awesome sculptor and I will definitely purchase more from their range.

It was great to see so much more variety this year at AdeptiCon. It wasn't just a huge line for Forge World with some local vendors showing up hocking goods - it was a lot of different actual industry folks showing off what they're doing that is new and exciting. There were a ton of smaller vendors, like the laser cut MDF vendors that were doing great deals and showing off all their sweet buildings. I really appreciated meeting the guys from Games and Gears again and picking up more brushes. The gent that runs the booth there is extremely enthusiastic and thanked me many times for doing their Kickstarter.

Amazing MDF buildings
I stopped at the KR Multicase booth and met Kath and Alan for the first time. They have been a super support of Foodhammer and Foodmachine in the past and I expressed all of our gratitude to them. I believe this was their first time at AdeptiCon and the crowds were lining up! I picked up a KaiserIII for my Bolt Action stuff and walked away extremely satisfied. I haven't purchased foam from any other vendor since we've discovered KR (thanks Carl at TIC).

I picked up some 32mm bases from Secret Weapon Miniatures for some 30k Marines. They do look better on larger bases. I got to talk to Justin again which I always enjoy. He admired my new Urban Streets display board I was using for my Slovak Tank War list. Looking forward to painting the rest of it!

I did stop at Forge World as I had been verbally bludgeoned by Larry into starting Horus Heresy stuff. I had thought about it in the past but the sticker shock is real. Even just getting the list I needed to start was $100 plus Chicago tax (almost an entire BA 1000 point force!). I wish they would do some kind of deal when you're there, although I know they don't have to because people will still buy it.

It was pretty crazy to see all the displays, model showcases, expensive banners and backdrops and then you have Forge World with cardboard boxes on tables hollering at people to buy more stuff. I realize they're a tiny shop but so are the other guys - I guess it just shows what you can do if you're still the big guy in the room.

I had to finish my Slovaks for Sunday so I kept painting on Wednesday night, Thursday night, and finished them Friday. It was great to finally have them finished and ready to go, and the hotel was decent to sit in and finish decals etc. I did get made fun of for having to finish stuff at the con but it paid off in the end :P

The hotel itself was pretty nice - lots of rooms, big halls, huge hallways. The parking was pretty great compared to the previous location - we had a ton of room and could park at two ends of the hotel, so if you had a game in one end you could park down there. 

The food / drink prices were insane. I'm used to hotel pricing due to travel but it was $4.50 for a bottled water. They had signs up that said "no outside food / drink" but we basically ignored that because their prices were just crazy. I might be mis-remembering but I don't think the prices were nearly as bad at the old hotel. The bathrooms were pretty well cleaned and didn't smell like a deathzone.

I didn't play Warmachine this year, but I'd have felt annoyed if I did. It was upstairs, so you had to carry all your stuff up, and the room was tiny. So much so that they had to play in the hallway. It was weird. I can't really understand why they chose to put it up there instead of giving it a room on the ground floor that was much larger. I also felt bad for some of the newer, smaller games that have come out like Firestorm Armada, Dropzone Commander, etc that had to share the 40k hall. It was so loud in there.

Bolt Action shared a room with Saga and Malifaux. It was a well sized room but the lighting was not very good - super yellow and a little dark. The Saga boards and armies were amazing with tons of 4Ground stuff, t-shirts, beer steins etc. I definitely have Saga on my list for next year, if even it is just a small combat patrol type thing.

The Malifaux was pretty large - super surprising that many people played it. For the most part it was OK though I can't really abide by some of the style choices they had for their tables:

This is creepy bullshit that needs to not happen. This makes wargamers look like weirdo creepsters. Don't do it. 'Nuff said.

The Necromunda by Night tournament was again run by Jeremy and he did a great job. We filled up the one session with a ton of FCG guys and it was super fun. It was hilarious seeing some of the newer 40k guys who had never played it before dealing with some of the 2nd edition stuff. I managed to pull third place and Josh pulled first place, which is awesome. I also managed to flag down Andy Chambers at one point during the weekend to sign my copy of Necromunda, my favorite game =D

I ended up playing in four events over four days and it was a bit much. The three full-day Bolt Action tournaments meant that I didn't get to do much else those days - not visit the vendor hall, not play Warmachine, etc. As much as I want to get in as many games of Bolt Action as possible I don't know what I'll do next year to carve out a day for other stuff. I realize the vendors have long days but it'd be sweet if they could stay open until 8 or 9 one night.

Check back next week for some Bolt Action preparations for our first tournament!

No comments:

Post a Comment