Monday, November 5, 2012

AetherCon Online Tabletop Gaming Convention 2012 (November 16-18)

I was contacted recently by Stephen Holodinsky about helping to support a project he's working on with a whole bunch of other people. He explained that he'd read my blog entry about using the Roll20 app in Google+ hangout games (This was, by the way, the most-read blog I've written thus far) and wondered if I'd be interested in helping to promote AetherCon.

I'd seen the AetherCon stuff here and there, in the Aether as it were, but hadn't paid overly much attention to it. I never go anywhere or do anything, so another convention promotion is just sort of depressing. Seriously, I cannot tell you how bummed I was to miss out on GenCon and some of the others, and have vowed that I'm going to DragonCon next year, come Hell or high water. But I digress...

For those of you who also have not been paying attention, AetherCon is a convention, but not a convention in the normal sense. Yes, we will gather for games, goods, and good fellowship, but not in the same Place. Rather we will gather at the same Time, in our own space, and share some virtual space with others. AetherCon is what I believe is the first all-online tabletop gaming convention. Who knew?

Well, once I got my head wrapped around that little bit of info, it all pretty much fell into place. Would I like to help Stephen and the other organizers promote the event? Hells yes, I would! This is freaking awesome! So, here we go:

AetherCon is coming to your town. It's coming to EVERYBODY'S town! It will feature scheduled game sessions, tournament games (with prizes!), artists, vendors, and just about everything you'd expect at a regular convention. Well, maybe not that crud you got at DragonCon that had you hacking up green stuff for two weeks, and probably not too many cosplayers and booth babes. But sacrifices must be made. Here I go digressing again.

So, anyway, the event is supported by a whole bunch of gaming companies and RPG communities, too many to do justice to in this short announcement, and the organizers are going out of their ways to make it hospitable for participants. I've already signed up to play DCC at the 'Con, and will be helping to moderate a discussion or two. You also might find me hanging out in the Ox & Mule, a virtual chat room where you can talk gaming and such. So, yeah, I'm going. And why not? It's free, and I want to support what seems like a pretty inspired effort to bring tabletop gaming to the virtual communities that support it. Win!

So, here I am, and I'm asking you my readers to go to the AetherCon website and see what's there. Sign up for a game, chat with some artists and designers, hang out in the virtual pub, visit the virtual vendors' tables. There's a metric fuck-ton of stuff to be seen, and none of it will cost you a dime. No registration fees. No extra charges to play. Such a deal!

It's also a chance to try out Roll20 to see if it's something you'd like to use in your own Hangout games. I've used it for three sessions so far, and I really like it. This is an excellent opportunity to see it in action, if you haven't yet.

So, there's my pitch. Now what do you need to do? Click on some of those links, visit the site, and see if there's something there for you. Go check it out. What could it hurt?

AetherCon will run from Friday November 16th through Sunday November 18th. Join there by staying home.