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Pre-PAX Boardgame night at the Sheraton

LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
edited August 20 in PAX West
We have confirmation! This event WILL happen. The specifics haven't been worked out yet, so sit tight and this OP will be updated once we have full information.

This is a placeholder. This event is NOT confirmed yet; details will be coming as I receive them.

Update: The event coordinator we usually work with is no longer at the Sheraton. We may need to start all over again with negotiating this event; I can't get hold of her yet and have been unable to determine what information about this event was passed on to the new staff.

The coordinator has been reached and is not super on board with this event. A higher-level interference in support of this event has been requested.


I'll keep everyone posted.

Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
LexiconGrrl on
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Posts

  • every day's greatevery day's great Registered User regular
    edited July 31
    This is a cool event - I hope it returns!!

    Will there be any sort of matchmaking system if you are looking for (or open to) additional players joining your game and/or looking for a game to join yourself? I don't recall if there was a system in the past but it might be useful to have something, even if it's just a whiteboard/bulletin board or a google docs spreadsheet of time/game/table number/players needed/etc..

    Also it's fun to learn to play new games - it would be cool to find out if anyone is interested in teaching a particular game (maybe your favorite game?) to new players, or maybe trying to play a new game you've never played before.

    Also.... what do you think about possibly adding Switch (and/or other mobile/handheld) gaming to the mix for those who might be interested? :D

    every day's great on
  • HalseySpartan2HalseySpartan2 Quality Assurance Engineer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    I would be up for attending along with my girlfriend. We can bring a variety of games - Dominion, Cards Against Humanity/Muggles, Oregon Trail, etc

    SHwjM12.png
  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    @every day's great Not sure, but it sounds like you haven't been to the event before. I'd recommend checking out last year's thread for mo'betta information than in this thread's OP:

    https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/212733/pre-pax-dont-call-me-a-peck-boardgame-night-in-ballroom-willow-official/p1

    To answer your specific questions:
    There is always a matchmaking system
    Teaching people to play new games is always a thing at this event
    People are welcome to bring handheld games themselves but no e-game official setup is available.

    Also, please note the update to the OP for this year's Special Challenge.

    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
    zerzhul
  • anifirebirdanifirebird Registered User regular
    Oh this sounds really cool! I was hoping to find something to do for a couple hours after the Feast. I haven't played Dominion or Cataan in SO long and I know they are basic, but as someone who doesn't play much, I still really enjoy them. Also, Cards Against Muggles is something I really want to play. Frick the pax hype is real.

  • rorshack6rorshack6 Registered User new member
    I'm super bummed out, I'll be at the Triwizard Tournament so I wouldn't be able to make it. Hopefully Skal Beer Hall will be up and running?

  • ReakwindeReakwinde Registered User regular
    @LexiconGrrl is there anything i can do to help you get this set up?

  • every day's greatevery day's great Registered User regular
    edited August 7
    @every day's great Not sure, but it sounds like you haven't been to the event before. I'd recommend checking out last year's thread for mo'betta information than in this thread's OP:

    https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/212733/pre-pax-dont-call-me-a-peck-boardgame-night-in-ballroom-willow-official/p1

    To answer your specific questions:
    There is always a matchmaking system
    Teaching people to play new games is always a thing at this event
    People are welcome to bring handheld games themselves but no e-game official setup is available.

    Also, please note the update to the OP for this year's Special Challenge.

    Thanks @LexiconGrrl for your reply!! I attended the pre-PAX gaming night in 2016 and I stopped by last year, but I still have a few questions. This is sounding pretty good though!!

    1. Great! How will the onsite matchmaking system work? Is there going to be a bulletin board/whiteboard/google doc or ??? (I don't recommend using the PAX forum or twitter because things get buried and out of date quickly and can't be updated easily!) Last time I went there didn't seem to be a functional matchmaking system, but maybe it has improved?

    2. Great! How can I find people who are teaching games and/or let people know I want to teach my favorite game? I might like to see something like a board with a list of "Learn to Play!" and a list of games and tables to go to, for example.

    3. Great! I'd like to suggest that people who are interested in handheld/portable gaming use the matchmaking system and also put some sort of stand-up sign on their tables to show what game they're playing. It might be nice to have a board listing which games are being played at which tables.

    and one new question for tabletop enthusiasts and organizers:

    4. Will there be ongoing tabletop matchmaking organization somewhere throughout PAX? That would be nice! Last year I saw lots of empty free play rooms in the WSCC and stacks of games waiting to be checked out from the game libraries and played. The WSCC is open until midnight so we should really take advantage of it!!

    Regarding the Special Challenge problem (no contact at the Sheraton) - I wish I could help!! Maybe someone who is local?? :confused:

    every day's great on
  • zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    Lexicongrrl is local.

    Also for 4, I haven't seen anything particularly useful for matchmaking at west, since TT is so spread out.

    P0fkRjI.png5OEMupX.png
  • AaronElWhiteAaronElWhite WARegistered User regular
    Thanks for all of your hard work like every year, Lexi. Crossing fingers that we can still do it!

  • jag986jag986 Registered User regular
    Thanks for staying on this Lexicon. If it doesn't work out, I might cancel one of my hotel nights and save a little money, I was reserving Thursday to try this out.

  • KhadourKhadour Dinosaur Cupcake Hillsboro, ORRegistered User regular
    @LexiconGrrl - let me know if there's anything that Team Portland can do to help.

    Do unto others 20% better than you would expect them to do unto you, to correct for subjective error - Linus Pauling
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    jswidget.php?username=cmdour&numitems=5&header=1&text=none&images=small&show=recentplays&imagesonly=1&imagepos=right&inline=1&domains%5B%5D=boardgame&imagewidget=1

    LexiconGrrl
  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    This was an incredible thing to experience last year, thank you for your work LexiconGrrl. If this is going to be a thing this year I'd love to spend as much time as I can playing games with fellow PAXers!

  • ReakwindeReakwinde Registered User regular
    I hope @LexiconGrrl is successful at getting this all squared away with the Sheraton management. I would like to maybe get a discord channel set up -- maybe specifically use it for impromptu gatherings during PAX evenings for RPGs or Tabletops - I am pretty sure my friend @R23 will be bringing Kingdom Death: Monster and i am always down for D&D or Pathfinder as long as i do not need to GM. So if someone here wants to GM for Pax games let me know, and i can happily provide some players :) - Thoughts are welcome, and we can definitely use the same channel if the Sheraton does not want to officially sanction something. If interest is there I will edit post to include the Discord link etc.

    IncreaseBlue
  • wolfemancswolfemancs Registered User regular
    a Discord channel that forum people could use when looking for player or looking for a game would be awesome. I usually go alone and sometimes run into friends, but it'd be cool to be wandering around in the evening, and want to play a game, pop open discord on my phone, pray to the service gods, and then find a game to go play with people.

    Reakwinde
  • DashDDashD Dread Pirate Chef Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    I hope things work out for this year. This event is always such fun and a great way to meet other forumers irl.

    "Brilliant! Oh wait, if we were meant to fly, we would have been born with little bags of nuts."
    "Pinky, you are a little bag of nuts."
    paxminibadges.png
  • disabledgamerj2disabledgamerj2 Kirkland, WashingtonRegistered User regular
    Any update on the status of this event?

  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    edited August 15

    1. Great! How will the onsite matchmaking system work?

    The matchmaking system is always at the info table. You have to stop by to sign up. That said, the problem is that there are always WAY more (like probably 500% more) people looking for games than available games open. People also don’t come back to mark off when a game is full, so any system is only useful for about 5 minutes before it becomes inaccurate. After seven or eight years coordinating this event, it’s become clear that there is no *really effective* matchmaking system at an event this big.
    3. Great! How can I find people who are teaching games and/or let people know I want to teach my favorite game? I might like to see something like a board with a list of "Learn to Play!" and a list of games and tables to go to, for example.

    Stop by the info table.
    4. Great! I'd like to suggest that people who are interested in handheld/portable gaming use the matchmaking system and also put some sort of stand-up sign on their tables to show what game they're playing. It might be nice to have a board listing which games are being played at which tables.

    People are always welcome to do this but don’t. There’s just not a lot of handheld presence at a board game event. Plus, most people just use the built in matchmaking on their devices. An analog system is redundant and probably won’t get used.
    4. Will there be ongoing tabletop matchmaking organization somewhere throughout PAX? That would be nice! Last year I saw lots of empty free play rooms in the WSCC and stacks of games waiting to be checked out from the game libraries and played. The WSCC is open until midnight so we should really take advantage of it!!

    The folks who organize TT for PAX proper are probably not on this thread. There should be another thread on the forums for official TT. This suggestion should be posted there.

    LexiconGrrl on
    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
    IncreaseBlue
  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    Thanks for the check-ins, all. Still sorting out stuff with the new manager. No updates yet on the status of the event, sorry!!

    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
    IncreaseBlueevery day's great
  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    Thanks for the check-ins, all. Still sorting out stuff with the new manager. No updates yet on the status of the event, sorry!!

    Is there anything we (I) can do to assist?

  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    Nope, it’s just politics. More hands won’t help, but thanks a lot for the offer!

    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
  • ReakwindeReakwinde Registered User regular
    edited August 15
    I had previously commented that I would set up a discord channel for the pre-pax Board Game night - I have done so - https://discord.gg/fwnjFTr - please be patient if there are issues with Discord. I will try and resolve them.

    Reakwinde on
    LexiconGrrl
  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    rorshack6 wrote: »
    Hopefully Skal Beer Hall will be up and running?

    Gah! I wish. The F’ing city took FIVE MONTHS to issue our construction permits, so we just started construction a couple weeks ago. Maybe October?

    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
  • GhostDanGhostDan Registered User regular
    Thanks for all your hard work on this LexiconGrrl, hopefully PA, you, and the sheraton can figure something out.


    LexiconGrrlClannMorgan
  • ClannMorganClannMorgan Registered User regular
    Maybe October?

    Noooo! Darn City dragging their heels.

  • vespachicavespachica SeattleRegistered User regular
    City permits are terrible right now and I'm kinda surprised you didn't know. After my work sold the building in Queen Anne we were able to stay 4-5 months rent free because they weren't going to be able to do anything with it anyway.

    Anyway, back to on topic, it sucks that Sheraton is dragging its feet! Surely SOMEONE there knows that this happens every year?

    ufq9gj8383nh.png

  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    edited August 20
    vespachica wrote: »
    I'm kinda surprised you didn't know.
    I knew, just explaining for the person who asked. :P

    Re: The Sheraton. This isn’t a big revenue generator for the hotel, so when it happens during a whole-facility buyout, I think it gets eclipsed by all the other Reed/PA activity over the weekend. I also got super busy closing my place in July and didn’t start planning as early as I should have, so there’s that. Hopefully any headaches this year will translate into smooth sailing next year.

    LexiconGrrl on
    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
    vespachica
  • every day's greatevery day's great Registered User regular
    edited August 20

    1. Great! How will the onsite matchmaking system work?

    The matchmaking system is always at the info table. You have to stop by to sign up. That said, the problem is that there are always WAY more (like probably 500% more) people looking for games than available games open. People also don’t come back to mark off when a game is full, so any system is only useful for about 5 minutes before it becomes inaccurate. After seven or eight years coordinating this event, it’s become clear that there is no *really effective* matchmaking system at an event this big.

    Hmm, that is too bad. :(

    Perhaps having a whiteboard (and a stack of markers and erasers) might help - maybe an improved ad hoc matching system might emerge? Being able to see things from a distance rather than having to look at a small piece of paper might also help. Maybe it could help with matching up those extra people based on games they have or are interested in playing. I wonder what other conventions or self-organizing game meetups do.....

    Or maybe an effective matchmaking system really is impossible, so we should just give up on the idea? :(

    Edit: Aha! Discord channel sounds like a good idea!!
    Could also make a Slack or IRC channel or something?!?!
    Maybe some other tools from the internets could be used somehow....

    every day's great on
  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    edited August 20
    Or maybe an effective matchmaking system really is impossible, so we should just give up on the idea? :(

    The system we have works reasonably well. I feel no need to put loads of time and energy into changing it for an infinitesimal difference in effectiveness.

    Changing the format won’t make people get up and come back to update their game once they’ve sat down. And a lot of people stumble into this event without knowing about it beforehand, don’t have games, and prefer to skip matchmaking because they want to wander around, talk to folks about the games, and use the upturned box tops system instead. A strict matchmaking list assumes everyone is familiar with every game and that’s never, ever going to be the case. People will always want to wander and check the tables out in person.

    Games fill up really fast. There’s honestly not a need for a matching system at all; I just provide one because a few folks are shy and don’t want to go query strangers about games, they’d rather be sent to a table in a more structured way, Again, the bigger challenge is that there are waaaay more players looking to join games than games open. Even when the matchmaking works perfectly, there still aren’t seats available.

    I’d recommend you attend the event and see how it works firsthand.

    LexiconGrrl on
    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
  • every day's greatevery day's great Registered User regular
    edited August 20
    Or maybe an effective matchmaking system really is impossible, so we should just give up on the idea? :(
    The system we have works reasonably well. I feel no need to put loads of time and energy into changing it for an infinitesimal difference in effectiveness.

    Changing the format won’t make people get up and come back to update their game once they’ve sat down. And a lot of people stumble into this event without knowing about it beforehand, don’t have games, and prefer to skip matchmaking because they want to wander around, talk to folks about the games, and use the upturned box tops system instead.
    I was kind of thinking about a system that is localized at the tables. Maybe something like per-table standups/cards/sheets of paper with the key information like:
    game: ShadowRift
    why it's awesome: Fantasy co-op deckbuilding, hard to win!
    players needed/welcome: YES! (or sorry, we're full)
    observers welcome: YES! (or sorry, we're shy/don't have space/etc.)
    You could also have sheets or mini-signs for "Learn To Play: <insert your favorite game here>" if people want to run learn-to-play tables.
    I’d recommend you attend the event and see how it works firsthand.
    Last year I came by but I was kind of put off because there didn't seem to be an effective matchmaking system or people who wanted to start a new game, and I wasn't enthusiastic about going from table to table asking to join games that already seemed to be in progress, or asking if people wanted to leave their game and join mine. I had better luck two years ago though.

    every day's great on
  • divisiontendivisionten Registered User regular
    Or maybe an effective matchmaking system really is impossible, so we should just give up on the idea? :(
    The system we have works reasonably well. I feel no need to put loads of time and energy into changing it for an infinitesimal difference in effectiveness.

    Changing the format won’t make people get up and come back to update their game once they’ve sat down. And a lot of people stumble into this event without knowing about it beforehand, don’t have games, and prefer to skip matchmaking because they want to wander around, talk to folks about the games, and use the upturned box tops system instead.
    I was kind of thinking about a system that is localized at the tables. Maybe something like per-game standups/cards/sheets of paper with the key information like:
    game: ShadowRift
    why it's awesome: Fantasy co-op deckbuilding, hard to win!
    players needed/welcome: YES!
    observers welcome: YES!
    I’d recommend you attend the event and see how it works firsthand.
    Last year I came by but I was kind of put off because there didn't seem to be an effective matchmaking system or people who wanted to start a new game, and I wasn't enthusiastic about going from table to table asking to join games that already seemed to be in progress, or asking if people wanted to leave their game and join mine. I had better luck two years ago though.

    The difficulty here is people being their own games to play. The organizers don’t know what is going to be there.

  • kropotkinkropotkin Forum Badge Creator London UKRegistered User regular
    I've attended every year I'm at PAX and like @LexiconGrrl says, the games fill up very quickly. The system in place is very simple and as soon as you add any complication it becomes difficult to run and maintain. There is a tenancy to overthink things amongst the PAX Community and that's fine, but honestly we really should keep it nice and simple.

    kepr1ychaawl.png
    SpicyMeatsLexiconGrrl
  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    Good News, Everyone! It's on! I just heard back from the hotel and we're working out details now. I'll update the OP as soon as we have confirmation on all the little deets.

    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
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  • anifirebirdanifirebird Registered User regular
    Woooo!

  • LexiconGrrlLexiconGrrl Registered User regular
    I was kind of thinking about a system that is localized at the tables. Maybe something like per-table standups/cards/sheets of paper with the key information

    People do this voluntarily sometimes, especially game devs who are demoing their games. But most people won't use them simply because the game will fill up before they're done writing everything out. We do have a table-to-table code, which is that if you're looking for people to play a game with you, you put the box top vertically on the table. That's the universal code for, "please join us!". If the top isn't vertical, the game isn't looking.
    Last year I came by but I was kind of put off because there didn't seem to be an effective matchmaking system or people who wanted to start a new game, and I wasn't enthusiastic about going from table to table asking to join games that already seemed to be in progress, or asking if people wanted to leave their game and join mine. I had better luck two years ago though.

    I'm sorry to hear that. Last year we only had like two people bring game libraries and it was an especially bad year for finding people to host games. I think your experience had more to do with the crowd demographic than the matching system; each year that goes by, the forum community comprises a smaller and smaller percentage of this event, while walk-in attendees increase. That means even MORE people who want to join games but not host them, and don't bring games with them. I try to encourage people when they stop by the info table, to start up new games but it's a very organic event and sometimes you just don't get that many willing hosts. I think a lot of people come to this event expecting it to be like a structured, demo-style exhibition - which it's not - it's a community event. If nobody is taking the lead to host a game for strangers, there just aren't any games available to join.

    Owner of and General Badass Chick at Seattle's best Distillery & Scandinavian Cafe Old Ballard Liquor Co.
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