Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hobby Gamers part 2: Event ideas

Following up on my previous post I will try to layout a few examples and ideas for running really cool hobby events. The main goal here is cinematic theme and making these games fit into a story line of some sort.

As I mentioned before the guys at the Astronomi-con do a great job running events like these. Another great resource for themed events is the campaign weekends that the guys from Tempus Fugitives run at Warhammer World in the UK.

There are some great download-able resources on the Tempus Fugitives website. They have run campaign events set in the Age of the Emperor/Horus Heresy, this next year they are doing a Badab War event called into the Maelstrom. They also have many fan made codecies covering things like the Ad Mech and Dark Mechanicus forces.

Both of these groups run very successful events that the participants rave about. This to me just shows the success of the event model that they have chosen.

Now for the basic ideas that I think would make for a great Hobby Event.

First up is a strong narrative; a great story setting the stage for why the combatants are involved in the fight. I think this is one of the most important aspects for a hobby event, a well thought out story will lead to a much more cinematic event.

Second choosing the right platform for the event. You'll need to decide if you are running a single day campaign styled event, a campaign weekend, themed missions determined by the tables or a combination of these choices.

Thirdly you should determine how teams will be chosen and if there will be bonuses given for teams winning each round.

Those are my basic ideas for what should go into the initial planning for a Hobby Event.

Next time I will go in-depth into each of the categories outlining the different routes you can go with each. Including the benefits and possible down sides that may be involved.


  1. Clear thinking, and my kind of thinking!

  2. Funnily enough, I've been worrying this precise topic for a few weeks now -timely and topical. These links are really helpful as well. Thank you.

    Now back to work.

  3. You had me at hello.

    BINGO! I am glad to see other bloggers speaking up about this topic.

    Yes, competitive tournaments are great and serve a purpose in the hobby as a whole. But competitive tourney players are a minority (albeit vocal) part of this hobby.

    W/L Tournaments without battle points, campaign weekends, and event like that are going to be making a HUGE splash in this hobby if we keep demanding it!

  4. Jim - I would love to see some sort of framework for a narrative campaign which could be played in a day. My initial thoughts are for a basic flowchart where different actions or events during each game will change the course of the narrative. Culmination in an Apoc style battle would be keen.

    The thing with narrative events of course is that it's best to have some kind of Game Master to ensure that the whackiness stays balanced and fun for all.

    I would probably prefer to see such an event without a fee and without "prizes" but with "awards" if you know what I mean. Sometimes a simple home-made trophy or certificate for "defending the pass against all odds" is more meaningful than $25 of store credit.

    Like I said before, I love and support competitive tournaments, but think there is a HUGE place for these types of events as well.

  5. Thanks for the comments.

    Purgatus, I will be laying out a basic framework for a one day narrative events in the next post. I concur a gamemaster of some sort is my preferred model for these events. Which is essentially what the Event Organizer is.

    I am not sure that these all of these events can be free entry. Some will have to pay for the space to play in.

    I do agree in general, I would rather these events give awards or trophies as opposed to actual prizes.