Getting Conventional

For some time, the SeriouslyBoard crew have talked about putting on an all day board gaming event for anyone interested.

It’s about time we got the process started, but we need your help.

The idea of running a board gaming convention has long appealed to us, and our recent trip to Waitangi Wellycon has convinced us to finally put our plans into action.

We’re currently looking at a one day event here in Tauranga, and we can always look to expand that later on down the road – or sooner, depending on demand!

One of the first things we’d like to work out is the date.  The two times of the year that stand out as realistic options are Labour Weekend, (October 22nd to 24th), or early in the New Year (January 2nd or thereabouts).

So we’d love it if you could help us by noting down your preference in our poll:
[polldaddy poll=4560942]

But we’d also love to hear your general thoughts…

  • We’d love to have one day discounts and prizes available, but what sorts of prizes would you like to see?
  • Would you want a board gaming tournament on the day, or just casual gaming – or both?
  • Would you be willing to pay a small fee at the door to help cover the costs of the venue and prizes?
  • What other things would you like to see at such an event?
  • In short, what would it take to convince you to come?

So have your say, and let’s create a fantastic event that you’d love to come to!

Posted in ,

David and Angela


  1. Craig on February 17, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    Paying a small fee, $5 or so, would be fine by me. Especially if there was free instant coffee/tea available or something like that.

    A tournament might be fun, but I’d also want to be able to just drift in and play whatever.

    • David on February 18, 2011 at 10:18 am

      Hi Craig. Thanks for that.

      Fees would likely be needed to afford the venue, prizes, and so on – but we want to make it affordable for attendees.

      I think refreshments would be a good idea, too.

      We really want to provide an enjoyable and value for money experience.

  2. Tim on February 18, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    I would expect to pay a fee for venue etc. anything under $10 is fine. A tournament would be cool, but it would need to not take over the whole day/place, since I think most people would be casual gamers.

    • David on February 18, 2011 at 3:04 pm

      The more we think about it, the more we realise that one day probably won’t be enough.

      To make it truly worthwhile, a second day might be necessary – and that might enable a tournament of sorts to take place.

      It’s all speculation at the moment, and I agree that most people will prefer to game casually, but there’s still plenty of time to work out these finer details.

  3. Alison on February 21, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Sounds like a great idea, I would probably attend whenver it was on. Small fee ok, refreshments great, don’t really go in for tournaments myself, but prefer casual gaming.

    • David on February 21, 2011 at 11:19 am

      Thanks for your comments, Alison. The idea of a tournament would be so that those who want to partake in one can, while the rest, (and probably the majority), are free to game casually throughout. The hope is that those in the tournament would also have plenty of opportunities to game casually as well. 🙂

  4. Stacey on February 22, 2011 at 10:59 am

    The only problem I see with Labour weekend is the clash with Armageddon in Auckland. I know there are a lot of gamers in Auckland that are likely to travel to play. Battlecry just happened over the weekend just been with hundreds of participants from wargaming to magic, to cards and board-gaming and role-playing. I was demo-ing games also for the public(and other participants on their breaks) who could come in and check out the event, so I know there is a lot of interest in this type of thing.

    • David on February 22, 2011 at 12:55 pm

      Hi Stacey. That’s a very good point about Armageddon. I think that as the board gaming calendar fills up, clashes will eventually be unavoidable. There are, unfortunately, not many nationwide holidays, and fewer still are available or practicable.

      Just on Battlecry, we visited on the weekend. We sponsored the board gaming tournament:

      It seemed to be a predominantly miniatures wargaming event than anything else. (Mind you, we didn’t go upstairs to see the Magic: The Gathering tables, and M:TG always seems to get a good following.)

      There were indeed plenty of gamers there and I hope you had a great time!

      Thanks for your thoughts! 🙂

  5. James on February 22, 2011 at 11:14 am

    I like the idea a lot, and would probably travel to Tauranga for something like that. I did go to Battlecry and played one or two games, but the focus was very heavily on wargaming/MTG so I’d love to see an event geared around boardgaming.

    I have no problem with a small fee, but wouldn’t be that interested in tournament play.

    What I would be most interested in, in rough order of significance:

    – Some system/structure in place to make casual gaming easy to get into. I’m sure a lot of people (myself included) would be happy to bring games, and I wonder if it work to try and get a number of people to volunteer to ‘manage’ a table in the sense of being a point of contact for anyone who wants to sit in and join a game.

    I would likely be attending with just my wife so the opportunity to meet new people and play games with them would be the biggest selling point for me.

    – A trading/selling area. I imagine a lot of us have games we’d be interested in trading or selling to others, and having a designated space and system for doing this would appeal a lot to me.

    – Vendor stalls. I like being able to pick up and look at the boxes for games, and the more there is to browse the better!

    • David on February 22, 2011 at 2:05 pm

      Hi James. I’m guessing by your presence at battlecry that you’re Auckland-based? We’re really hopeful of an out of town contingent and we’d love to see you!

      Just on your points…

      – We will definitely need to brainstorm around how to manage the tables and the games. From experience, people will typically join a table that’s just starting a game or get a game from the library, but it’d be nice to provide some direction regarding this – particularly for new people or new games.

      – A trading area sounds interesting. Maybe we could organise a math trade? I have no idea how to do that on the ground and away from a computer, but that could be a great way for people to offload games they no longer care for and get something they do want in return.

      – Yes, we’ll definitely have a vendor stall there. We’ll also have a discount that applies for the days of the convention, which means not only can you ignore freight, but you also get a saving on the games themselves! 😀

      • John on February 22, 2011 at 3:07 pm

        Tauranga works for me personally as I can stay with relatives. I’d probably be bringing my sons, too (11 and 14 yrs) and would like to know that this was an event where younger players can feel at home. The Mt Albert Games group in Ak is definitely fits that bill.

        Casual gaming definitely – this works better for the kids slipping into whatever takes their fancy and sussing out the adults that seem to be having the most fun. Tournaments are fine, so long as there is still somewhere available to play other games.

        I don’t get a game on the table half as much as I would like. I would say I’m mainly looking at having an opportunity to game all day – trading, talking about, looking at and trying new games, tournaments etc may add to experience but it wouldn’t be why I was coming.

        I wish you well with your venture and I am happy to pay. Under $10-00 would be great, but really? That sounds unlikely – gotta be realistic about costs. Supply of food and refreshments would seem critical.

        Nice location – easy access to fresh air and natural light, for instance – would make it just sublime!

        • David on February 22, 2011 at 4:08 pm

          Hi John. Thanks for your comments.

          We’d definitely be looking to accommodate for kids. A lot will depend on numbers, of course, and ages – but it’s very much our intention to include youngsters at the event.

          If there is a tournament, it’ll be the minority, I feel. My gut instinct is that the majority of people will want to take part in casual gaming exclusively, while the tournament attendees would get a mix of both.

          As far as costs are concerned, we’re just plucking numbers out of the air at the moment. Once we’ve done our research, we’ll have a better idea of what charges we’re likely to be passing on. (Again, that’s a numbers thing – the bigger the turnout, the cheaper things will be for everyone.)

          Yes, light and oxygen are definitely top priorities, haha! We’re canvassing the local area, particularly for places that are within walking distance of food stores: supermarkets, fast food, bakeries, etc.