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Gen Con 2018 (Good, Bad & Ugly)

The Good

What to say about Gen Con? I had a wonderful experience overall. I was set up next to the designers of Pioneers of Mars all week: two delightful gentlemen from Ottawa who were very accommodating. Their company, plus a slew of friendly players made running games quite the fun experience. On top of that, we added dozens of names to our mailing list, which is a huge plus, I even had several people ask me where they could buy Builders! because they had such a good experience with the game. To add to all of this, the food truck scene was amazing, one food truck made one of the best burgers I’ve had in the states (I really wish I remembered their name to give them proper credit). Our hotel was quite pleasant, and the short 10 minute walk to the convention centre was pleasant despite the heat.

The Bad

While the overall feel of Gen Con this year was positive, I kept feeling like the people were quite a bit more exclusive this year. Any time I would go for a wander to meet a new group of people, I would be met with distrust rather than the open friendliness I have grown to expect from the Gen Con crowd in that past three years of attending. To top that off, the jarring difference between the frigid interior of the convention centre and the blazing heat of the outdoor world was enough to cause me exhaustion by the end of the con.

The Ugly

I didn’t have too much experience of the ugly of Gen Con, although in a crowd that large I imagine there was certainly some. But, this year, I didn’t have any experience I would consider so egregious as to earn the label “ugly”.


– Nat Sanderson