Once more SaltCon approaches. This has become, without any doubt, one of the events each year that I most anticipate. I look forward to this more than summer, far more than the Salt Lake City Comic Con, more than almost anything during the normal course of a year. You might ask what SaltCon is, and I will gladly answer. SaltCon is…
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Or almost uninterrupted. I get really cranky when I don’t sleep enough, and food is important too. So, there are some interruptions. Last year, though, I played games for around 40 hours over the three days I attended. The best part was, that after three days and 40+ hours of gaming, I still wanted more. When board games and RPGs are among your favorite hobbies, there is no place better to be.
Additionally, there are really affordable rates at nearby hotels (more affordable the earlier you book rooms). What that means is that you don’t have to drive home and back every day. Instead you can crash in the small hours of the morning and get back to gaming early the next day. Or later if you sleep in like I did last year.
A Great Chance to Try New Games
SaltCon’s game library is legendary. No. Seriously. Check it out. And with the convention badge that you get for attending, you can check out any game in the library (even overnight). Yep, it’s that awesome. With over 1000 games in the library, and more added every year, you’ll be able to find almost any game you’ve been wanting to try out, and many you may never have even known about.
Not only is there a game library, but there are volunteers both with at the convention and with third-party programs like Envoy, there are people who can teach you most of the games you don’t yet know. Oh, and there are some games listed as “Play-to-Win” so when you play a new game you get entered into a drawing to win that game.
For the last two years I’ve volunteered at SaltCon. The first year through the Envoy program, and the second as an independent Game Master in the RPG area. I cannot express how positive an experience it was. Not only did I get to interact with awesome people, but because of the amount of time I spent volunteering, I got a free convention badge. There are lots of places volunteers get placed: from teaching games, to checking games out, leading RPG groups, and more. And most of the time, you can choose how you’d like to volunteer.
Where You Can Try Upcoming Games
SaltCon is also where the Ion Award is given every year. The Ion Award is given to the designer of the best unpublished game. Not only do up-and-coming designers compete with some of the tried-and-true designers for that award, they also present many of their newest creations in Prototype Alley. Yeah, it’s pretty amazing to be able to sit down with a game designer and try the game that they’ve sweated over. You get to see the process of how they built their games, and you get to try them out before they ever hit shelves.
I know some people go in for tournaments. I’m just not one of them. As mentioned in an earlier post, I’m incredibly competitive, and I don’t like how I feel when I’m being competitive. As a result, since the entire purpose of a tournament is to compete, I just don’t like them. But hey, if that’s your thing, it’s available.
Finally, I cannot express just how awesome SaltCon really is. Not only can you game for 4 days, borrow from a wide selection of awesome games, and interact with (or be one of) the awesome volunteers, but you get to build some awesome memories.
This year we’ll be attending the first three days, and we’ll be playing as many games on our ever-growing list of games to try. We’ll probably spend too much on games, eat out more than we should, and get less sleep than is probably wise. Best of all, we’ll have a great time.
March 1-4, 2018
This is late notice, but you can still get a badge to attend SaltCon. It is by far one of the best conventions I have ever been to. It’s well organized, friendly, and just plain fun. I highly encourage it, and hope to see you there!
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