Tag Archive: tcep


or, Feeling Your Headache Melting Away is the Best Feeling in the World.

Went to TCEP 18 this year. Had a blast. I’ll be honest; the whole convention was something of a blur for me, especially now, two weeks after the fact. There were a few things that stood out, though, and some of them were freaking hilarious, so I’ll share.

Friday was Hell On Earth for me. At least, it was, until about 11:00, at which point I handed off the documents I needed to turn in, and left the office. I didn’t know for sure if I was going to be well enough to attend the convention, but when I got home, I realized that the relaxing sensation I was feeling on my commute was my stress headache dissipating. I packed my bags, and off I went to the con.

I left right at the beginning of rush hour; this was a mistake. Fortunately, I made it through rush hour to Laurel with a minimum of fuss. The trip took about 70 minutes longer than it should have, but I arrived in one piece (as did the Little Red Truck), and promptly set about unloading the con suite, which showed up about five minutes behind me. After that was done, I set out to eat dinner with the other carnivores; normally, I head out on the bait run, but I really needed mass quantities of red meat. I ordered a ribeye, bloody rare. What I got was a piece of shoe leather, introduced to fire, so I sent it back. The second plate came out with a perfect steak, and I promptly set about enjoying it. After that, I recall some games happening, but I can’t for the life of me remember which ones…

Saturday came, and with it came more gaming and socializing. Not that I remember much of what, at this point, other than “fun”.

Sunday was somewhat more memorable. There was a LARP scheduled: Miskatonic Class Reunion. A good time was had by all. Byron, who was in charge of the game, had previously asked me if I wanted to play or run, and I asked him to put me where I was most needed. I got handed a shill. My entire purpose in the game was to stand up in front of everyone, tell them how awesome the punch was, and they really ought to try it, start to make a speech… and then keel over dead. I felt my death scene was particularly well done. Poor HotMamaB, though, later cussed me out for it. Apparently, her train of thought at the start of the game was similar to this:

“What the heck!? Since when does Tony wear a suit? Great! I actually get to play in a game with Tony! Wait, he’s dead. Dammit!”

…or something like that, anyway. What I particularly remember was the cross look on her face when she realized that, no, I was Really Most Sincerely Dead.

While everyone else was playing, I ended up running out for lunch with Joan, and we found this really neat little pan-Asian joint about five miles down the road, and it was fabulous. As in, I really enjoyed what I ate, and the prices weren’t even wince-worthy. After I got back, I promptly got dragged in as a GMs handyman, to handle props and stuff that Byron didn’t have enough hands to deal with. It was fun, running around and sticking little red stars on people who had no clue why they were getting them…

More gaming happened after that, and HotMamaB’s Sprog #2 pulled out a really classy move in Apples to Apples. When the adjective was “comedic”, Sprog  #2–who is seven–pulled out “my first time”. Byron promptly fell out of his chair, and came to report this move to HotMamaB, who started imitating a tomato. I have the coolest friends, with the coolest sprogs, and they provide endless entertainment. I also ended up failing to reign in my helium hand; more on that will probably come in a later post.

Monday morning was kind of a drag; I got to hang out with everyone, but I kept getting the usual end-of-con feeling of not wanting it to end. We gamed, we laughed, we partied, we had an excellent time. Hopefully, I’ll see everyone again next year, and perhaps even some new faces.

As usually happens, neither of us managed to get in all the gaming we wanted, but nevertheless, we pulled off a pretty impressive amount, especially considering we were both knee-deep in LARP Sunday afternoon (wherein I channeled an evil clown/alien, and discovered I have a talent for breaking the GM — Tony, on the other hand, GM’ed this mess).  Check it out!

Friday, 3 September

Thunderstone — Matt (17), Tony (16), Angel (13), Nakazan (10), and Wildfire (7)

Definitely one of the hot-ticket games this year, owing much of its popularity to the fact that its mechanic is similar to Dominion.  Luckily, Tony had bought his own copy, so we didn’t have to sit around and wait for an available board.  I hadn’t played before, and I haven’t had a chance to play a lot of Dominion, so I’m not entirely sure how I managed to pull off 13 points. amidst my confusion…but I’m not complaining!

Thunderstone (Take II) — Tony (37), Matt (21), Wildfire (20), Nakazan (18), and Angel (17)

We all did a lot better this time around, once Tony’d had a refresher-game, and the rest of us were now second-time players.  I still got pretty trounced, though, since Tony and Matt were very effective at picking at the smaller monsters, leaving the rest of us to fight the real menaces, like the “Archduke of Pain.  Fiends…

Saturday, 4 September

Race for the Galaxy — KMusser (67), Wildfire (47), Nakazan (39), Angel (35), and Matt (26)

KMusser stomped all over us with his massive prestige-garnering engine; meanwhile, there were more yellow-pumps going than I think I’ve seen in quite a while.  KMusser was not one of them, in case you’re wondering!

Keltis — Wildfire (44), KMusser (44), Radiant One (43), and Angel (38)

This one went straight on the wishlist.  It being my first go at this, I played a little too cautiously, trying to move my pieces evenly, and I really ought to have gone a little further out on a limb.  But I did pretty well, considering.

Ingenious — Nakazan (15), Angel (12), Wildfire (11)

I think of this as “dominoes with shapes on the diagonal.”  Nakazan had never played this, so he let me teach it to him…and then he had the nerve to win.  Hmph!

Innovation — Matt (4 achievements), KMusser (3 achievements), Angel (1 achievement), CT7 (1 achievement)

This was a really close victory on Matt’s part, though I had to tease him a little about how much of that victory he owed to the fact that most of his score-pile had been plundered from mine.  This was my second time playing this, so I was a little scattered in focus to really do well, but now that I have the hang of it, I’m really starting to enjoy it.

Innovation (Take II) — Nakazan (4 achievements), KMusser (3 achievements), Angel (1 achievement), and Wildfire (1 achievement)

Talk about squeaking a victory out by your teeth.  KMusser was denied a win only by the fact that I pulled a pretty evil move to ensure he couldn’t get a fourth achievement that round, immediately followed by a pretty evil move on Wildfire’s part to ensure Nakazan was stalled another two rounds.  KMusser retaliated on his next turn by denying me another achievement, which gave Nakazan the game.  …and then we all had to go lower our blood-pressure, because this really was a knock-down, drag-out game.

Ticket to Ride: Europe — Radiant One (132), Wildfire (117), Nostasi’a (114), KMusser (113), and Angel (88)

The phrase “pulled a KMusser” came from this game, because in order to aid Radiant One in securing Longest Track, KMusser very evilly and very unexpectedly derailed Wildfire.  It was a brilliant move!  But very dastardly.

Ultimate Zombies!!! — Eric (winner), Nakazan, Wildfire, Tony, and Cathy

Pandemic — Nakazan, Tony, Matt, and Angel; the game won.

Oh, did the game win.  An additional round would have saved us, but alas…

Pandemic — Nakazan, Tony, Matt, Rex, and Joan; the game won.  Again

Sunday, 5 September

Illuminati — Gorm (winner), Tony, Nakazan, Wildfire, Buls-i, Ironkite

Galaxy Trucker (teaching game; two rounds only) — HotMamaB (32), Tony (18), Cap’n Morgan (15), Nakazan (13), and Angel (4; dead)

I’m a little disgruntled by the fact that the game takes about a third of the time it takes to explain the rules.  But once I started getting the hang of what I’m supposed to do (which took quite a while to comprehend, due to the sheer amount of “Stuff You Need to Know”), it was a pretty quick process.  I was pleased…and then about twenty seconds later, I died.  C’est la vie.

Monday, 6 September

Ticket to Ride — Tony (126), Wildfire (100), Nakazan (98), and Angel (86)

I play TTR cautiously, which was a definite detractor.  I stuck to quick tickets — seeing as it was the America board, where so many routes run right next to each other, so that if you don’t Get There First, you’re pretty much toast — which meant I got a lot done, but for little return.

Creationary — Tony, HotMamaB, Cap’n Morgan, Daehith, Byron, and Prin.

Telestrations — Cap’n Morgan (16), Byron (14), Daehith (13), HotMamaB (13), Prin (12), Tony (11), Angel (7), and Wildfire (5)

Pictionary meets Telephone, which is a great recipe for chaos.  “Balloon head,” Tony, really?