Sunday, June 12, 2016

Adepticon 2016: Geek Nation Tours review

    When I went to Adepticon this year, I went in style. I booked my Adepticon experience through Geek Nation Tours and they made it my best Adepticon experience yet.

    The perks are really outstanding and start long before the event even takes place. The tour package includes the hotel, transportation to and from the airport, and dinner every night. Other perks included special minis and items just for the GNT participants. Arguably the best tangible perk is that the tour also includes the very awesome Adepticon VIG swag bag.

     Additionally, as a part of the tour, you can sign up for events one week before the general public can. You're nearly guaranteed to get a spot in every event or seminar you want to attend. No need to scramble at registration with a thousand other people trying to score a VIG bag or getting waitlisted for that one really awesome event you wanted to be a part of.

     As part of dinner each night, GNT invites a variety of guests to come talk with you. The Welcome Dinner's special guest was Angel Giraldez (who was amazing!) and Fantasy Flight came in to run demos of X-Wing,  Armada, and Imperial Assault. Another one of the dinners we did was at Medieval Times, which was an absolute blast. Each night also had a theme. One night was Podcasters night with guests from a variety of popular podcasts, Demo night (which was probably my favorite), Painters night, and the Farewell dinner (more on that).

     It's a close call to make, but the Demos night might have been my favorite. CMON, Mantic, and Osprey were there to demo games for everyone. One company I hadn't heard of was there, too, Red Republic Games. They're the ones behind Arena Rex, which I gushed about previously. This was the night where I had a chance to do their awesome demo.

     A close second was the Farewell dinner night. GNT brought Mark Gibbons to speak with us, and I couldn't have been more excited about that if I tried.

     He was at the event to debut the game he created with Andy Chambers called Dark Deeds. It's a fantastic game, which I wrote about previously. It was fun getting to meet with him and hear about what he's been up to recently.

     The best part of the tour, though, was getting to meet and geek out with a bunch of really cool people I wouldn't have met otherwise. I wasn't able to travel with friends this year, so my time at Adepticon was made even better by the instant connections created the first night of the tour with fellow participants. I made a lot of friends and many fond memories.

     This was my third year at Adepticon, but it was my best yet because of the tour. So even if you've gone to Adepticon before, going with Geek Nation Tours is an experience I would highly recommend.

Friday, June 10, 2016

40k Radio: 3rd Edition!

     I have a wonderful, fantastic announcement today. I'm one of new hosts of 40k Radio! All new hosts, all new show!

     You may have heard that earlier in the year, 40k Radio was sold to Teras Cassidy of Geek Nation Tours and the old crew is retiring from the show. After putting out the call for host applications, three new hosts were chosen- Matt, JF, and myself.
      This morning, the last show of the previous incarnation aired. It introduces JF and I and was the last hurrah for them. Thanks so much to Rik and Kyle for a warm welcome and I wish them the best of luck in their next endeavors. You can listen to the episode and all new episodes from the Freebooter's Network iTunes feed and their website.
     We'll be releasing the first official 3rd edition show in about two weeks time. I hope you'll give it a listen!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Dark Deeds Review

     One of the best games I demoed at Adepticon was Dark Deeds. I have to say "one of" because there was no shortage of fantastic games that I tried over the weekend. This one, though, was a bit of a dark horse for me. I'd seen it being demoed in the vendor hall, but I didn't actually demo it until the after-con mixer, thanks to the D6 Generation guys.

     The game is a collaboration between Andy Chambers and Mark Gibbons. It's a small card-based game where you play as a minion working for a wealthy patron to commit a series of sinister crimes. The board is the Street and there you can find cards for civilians, Nemeses, and Guards. You, as the minion, must fulfill any Dark Deeds (objective cards) from your Patron, rob civilians, and kill Nemeses to collect points. There is also a Tavern deck where you can draw cards to help you in your quest.

     The person with the most points at the end wins, simple enough, but there are plenty of ways you can mess with your compatriots. Steal their goodies, sic a guard on them, or flat out ignore the action of a card of their own. This game is nothing but fun and laughs with friends or with strangers.

     I played it only once that night but was immediately hooked. Even though the con was technically over, the makers were kind enough to bring down some copies and sell them to those of us that missed out on it during the event. That was so fantastic, because otherwise I would have missed out.  I've now played it many times since then and it's always been a blast.

     There are rules mods included with the game so you can play it with anywhere from 2 to 5 players. 4 players is really the sweet spot. The games are a little shorter with more people, however, they're much more fun with more people killing, maiming, and backstabbing one another.

     Adepticon was the game's coming out party, it was only available for pickup at the event or preorder at the time. They also offered a special expansion for Adepticon only. The expansions are limited run and individually numbered. I had a bit of luck on my side, and somehow managed to snag the #1 Adepticon expansion. Very cool.

     But Dark Deeds is shipping now and you can get it from Games & Gears. At about $60 (give or take a few bucks due to the exchange rate) it's a little pricey but the quality is absolutely top notch. The coins are actually metal, the Street mat is that "mouse-pad" stuff that is really nice, and the tokens are stained wood instead of plastic.

     They also recently announced that there will be a new special expansion for Gen Con similar to the Adepticon one. It will include 10 new cards and a die, and will be available for order on June 8th! So, if you're like me and can't make Gen Con, you can still get your hands on this awesome expansion. They will also be offering some bundles for the base game and remaining Adepticon expansions, while they last.
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