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A Look at Vul-Con Arena II – The Conclusion

I thought I’d finish up my look at last Saturday’s Vul-Con Arena II in Glendale, AZ.

I was very surprised by the number of people that I saw at Imperial Outpost Games throughout the afternoon. Granted, I didn’t spend the evening there but I’d take a stab, from the coming and going I observed throughout the day, there may have been upwards of 250-300 people who stopped by. For a game day held in a store, as opposed to a neutral location like a community center or such, I’d have to say the turnout was quite impressive.

If the various games being held at Arena II is an indication of what we’ll find at Vul-Con come next February, gamers of all stripes are going to find themselves right at home. Not only were typical con fare like D&D, Pathfinder, WH40k, and Magic: The Gathering present but attendees had plenty of other options as well. Games of Dust Tactics, Under a Laughing Moon, Dominion, Revolution from SJG, as well as some home grown miniature rules were being played. Two of the more impressive displays were the huge Hippodrome (in which a large scale game of the old Avalon Hill classic, Circus Maximus took place) and the Wild West skirmish game with an entire town laid out on the gaming table which was provided by the Table Top Gaming Society. TTGS also ran a Zulu/British battle as well. One of original designers of TSR’s Boot Hill was also there running a double blind western shoot out as well.

As far as my own gaming, I did get in my first game of Paizo’s Pathfinder RPG although the scenario we played was actually the old Hill Giant module from AD&D. I thought that was pretty funny because I owned that very same module (well the first printing actually) when I was in 8th grade. Obviously I didn’t remember the scenario but I thought it was interesting none the less. I can’t say that I know much more about Pathfinder now than I did before playing but I’d be interested in checking the system out further.

Outside of Pathfinder I didn’t play anything else, simply because I wanted to observe the game day and it would have been difficult to get a good feel for the overall experience if I was just focused on playing games. Add in the fact that I was running on empty after a late Friday night and recording the podcast in the wee hours of the morning.

I also enjoyed spending some time speaking with Jessie Foster who is one of Steve Jackson Games’ Men in Black crew as well as some other folks who are very involved in the local hobby scene such as Chris and Tiffany Hartwig, who ran the gaming at this past Phoenix Comic Con, the gentleman behind the upcoming steampunk themed DarkCon. Sorry to say I don’t recall his name off hand; yes, I can be pretty bad with names sometimes…

I always have a lot of fun talking with fellow gamers wherever I go to get their thoughts on what they like to bring to the table and get their thoughts on the hobby overall.

All in all, I believe Vul-Con Arena II bodes well for what can be expected at next year’s big show. I for one can’t wait to see what’s in store for gamers here in the Valley and, obviously enough, I’ll be sure to bring everyone the latest developments as soon as I learn of them!

Jeff McAleer

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4 Comments

  1. Thanks for mentioning the Table Top Gaming Society in your review. We aren’t that well known in the valley so any time we get mentioned I like to acknowledge it.

    We’re a miniatures gaming club based in Mesa. But, we have members from all over the valley, and from as far away as Tucson and Snowflake. Our focus is mainly on Historical periods but we occasionally dabble in some fantasy or sci-fi games as well. The club has taken up the challenge of supporting Vul-Con with games and other things as much as we can. Hopefully the convention will develop into something very special. The Arena events are getting better each time and seem to be leading to that.

    Anyone interested in historical miniatures gaming, the Table Top Gaming Society, or just helping us support Vul-Con, is welcome to contact us.

    See you at Arena III in December !

    Bob

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    • You’re very welcome Bob! As our long time visitors/listeners already know, I’m a historical miniature gamer from way back. I’ll be sure to add the link to the society to our Resources page later this evening.

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  2. It was great meeting you Jeff and we would like to thank you for coming and supporting our new convention. Arena II was a great success and Arena III in December I’m sure will not disappoint with some programming Vul-Con attendees are already familiar with and some new tricks we have up our sleeves. One of the things scheduled I know you will be interested in is an oldie but goodie, “B-17 Queen of the Skies” multiplayer mission, that I’m sure you’ll want to participate in. We will also be test driving Trireme our third “Ludi Vulcani”.

    Hope to see you there!

    Rick

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    • Ah, good old B-17! I’ll be reviewing B-29, which is a bit of a sequel (at least in spirit), in the next week or so.

      Thanks for having me out Rick and I’m looking forward to setting up an interview with yourself and Jay very soon! Of course, I’ll be making my way out to Arena III come December!

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