Looney Labs Rabbits Mailing list Archive

[Rabbits] [Event] Mensa Regional Gathering by Diane Sudduth

  • FromSuperFRED <superfred@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • DateSun, 19 Feb 2006 13:19:55 -0500
This is an auto-generated report from SuperFRED regarding an event that Diane Sudduth has submitted.

Title: Mensa Regional Gathering
Location: Saint Louis, Missouri
Date: 2/17-2/18

Rabbit Edward Lorden organized a really neat demo event this past weekend and asked a few of us to help out.  I'm sure he'll submit the "official" report, as it was his event, but wanted to give you my perspective on it as well.  Ed has been a member of Mensa for several years and this weekend was their Regional Gathering in St. Louis, Missouri, and Ed wanted to demo Looney Labs games there and set everything up with the organizers.  He asked friends and fellow Rabbits Chris Prysock and myself to help out, and we were joined on Friday evening by another friend (not *yet* a rabbit, but soon!) Connie Jakobi.

I'm not sure what arrangements he had to make with the event organizers but rather than have "open gaming" or "open demos" he arranged to have three specific hour-long events listed on the convention schedule, each event to demo one of your games.  He chose Fluxx and Zendo because they'd been given Mensa awards, and Chrononauts because the theme of the Gathering had to do with "Presidents"

First up, Friday evening at 10pm, was Fluxx.  I'm not sure how many people attended the Gathering though it seemed to be less than 100, and things seemed a bit slow to get going on Friday evening so turnout at the Fluxx demo was a bit sparse, but the folks who did show up to play really seemed to enjoy the game a LOT.  We 4 demo-folks played several games of Fluxx with Mensans, with quite a few others stopping by to watch for a bit.  We'd brought along our entire stashes of Looney Games and after several games of Fluxx the Mensans indicated an interest in learning Aquarius, so out came the cards and we played a few games of that as well!  The room we'd been scheduled for didn't have a later event so we ended up playing for about 90-minutes before heading home for a few hours of sleep so we could be fresh for our Saturday morning demo.

Saturday morning, 9am, we again met up for a demo, this time for Chrononauts (I'm not sure who decided the time or the order of the games.  Personally I think 9am Saturday morning at a convention is a bit early for Chrononauts)  Turnout was initially low but the folks who did show up were VERY interested and we played an "open" game (with all cards on the table) to demo the game and discuss strategy.  As the game progressed several other Mensans stopped by to observe and indicated interest in a future game.  As our space was scheduled at 10am we were forced to stick to our one-hour allotment but much fun was had by all.

Ed, a Mensan, was a paying attendee of the Gathering and had been given permission by the organizers for Chris, Connie and I to stop by for the demos only, so Chris and I expected to head out after the Saturday morning Chrononauts demo, leaving Ed to handle the Saturday afternoon Zendo demo on his own, however it didn't *quite* work out that way.  Seems that the Gathering attendees wanted MORE!  

Though we were 'evicted' from our Chrononauts demo room by another presentation folks wanted to play more games, so we were <strike>dragged</strike> led off to the hospitality room where we took over a table to continue, attracting more folks.  I completely lost track of how many games we played.  We played Fluxx, EcoFluxx, and looked at Family Fluxx but didn't actually play.  There was another game or two of Chrononauts and games of Aquarius and then back to Fluxx.  (Zendo is really the only Pyramid game we know, having been introduced to Looney games only in the last year or so, and that via the card games, particularly Fluxx.  I'm sure we'll learn Icetowers, etc, eventually, but for now we mostly have the card games, which we LOVE)  

Chris had to head out after about another hour of demos but I was, essentially, "adopted" by the Gathering folks and accepted into the fold, so stayed to play.  At one point we were asked to move to make space so they could serve lunch, but when the folks who wanted to play couldn't find another venue to set up games we went back to Hospitality and played, and were in the way, during lunch!  As the morning and early afternoon progressed in the Hospitality room the attendees to our impromptu demo-table came and went as we switched from game to game.  

Ed had set things up with the Mensa Gathering folks to do the demos then got *swamped* at work, so I organized the "carrots" for us.   When he first told me that he was planning this back in Decemter I'd ordered my carrot box and a few carrots to go inside it, just to try to be prepared.  With the initial format of the demos as assigned by the Gathering organizers we didn't really know whether or not to consider this a Mini Experiment, but last week I ordered us an Experiment Kit, extra stickers, and Rabbit IDs for the three of us.  The stickers turned out to be a HUGE hit!!  Folks were asking what the stickers were about and wanted to know where THEY could get some!  As no one we'd met that day had ever seen the Looney Games before they weren't initially very interested in the Star card, but by the end of Saturday we'd given out quite a few (as well as a few Jackpot and Time Vortex cards) and folks were asking where to buy the games.  We referred them to several local retai!
 lers as well as giving them your "card catalog" so I expect the Looney Love will continue to spread, at least a bit.

After about 4 unexpected hours of demoing games in the Hospitality room it was time for the Zendo demo and debut.  (We'd been trying to build anticipation all afternoon)  We only had one copy of the game but stretched the "how many can play" number a bit and rotated folks in and out as the games went on.  Ed was Master for the first few rounds and started with my favorite demo rule, "must contain a red piece" which took them FOREVER to figure out.  After a second or third game others wanted to be Master and did really good jobs!!  They also started figuring out the rules a LOT faster.  Several folks were sad to hear that the boxed Zendo sets were getting difficult if not impossible to find anymore, but were happy to hear the news that the Pyramids were available as were the Zendo rules and "rule suggestion" cards.  It was quite well received and we "stretched" our demo-time by about 30-minutes at least as no one seemed to be scheduled in our room after the demo.  

After Zendo I needed to head out, having spent All Day there when I'd been expecting to spend only about an hour or so.  It was a Very Fun Time!  Somehow we'd never played NanoFictionary but as I was leaving it was "pounced upon" by a few of the Mensans so I hung out long enough to give them a quick rules-overview (Ed has played but wasn't quite ready to demo) and as I left they began a game.   

The Gathering continues today (Sunday) and I've not chatted with Ed yet so I've no idea how long he played games last night or with how many people, nor if he's had a chance to see/attend Anything Else at the Gathering!  He sure seemed to be having a lot of fun though!  I know I enjoyed it!

Thanks so much for making such great games!!!  

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