Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Origins 2017: Day 5

This is Saturday, the biggest day at the Origins Gaming Convention. The dealer show should be elbow to elbow, with no room to move and little room to turn around. As you can see, that's not the case.

Dealer Show
This is my unscientific observation, but I don't think the Origins Con was as well attended this year as it has been in the past.  Just my opinion, but on Saturday in the early afternoon I saw many vendors without a crowd around their booth.  That bothers me a little, as coming to Origins costs these people a lot of money, and none of them are independently wealthy.

The big news for the entire convention (for us, anyway) is the Nuclear War tournament, as hosted by game designer Rick Loomis from Flying Buffalo.

Nuclear War!
Players attack each other by use of propaganda, natural calamities, and everyone's favorite - a delivery system with a warhead attached to it.  When the radioactive fallout settles, the last man standing is declared the winner.

Rick Loomis, Our Noble Host

Player's Mat
The layout is simple enough that a player's mat isn't really needed, but these are pretty cool.  The background photo you see on the mat is the control panel from an actual nuclear missile silo (since deactivated), and was taken by Rick himself while on vacation.  I gather that celebrating the fourth of July required two men, two keys, and two sets of launch codes.  This was to prevent one man from going a little funny in the head and deciding, all on his own, to get the show started.

We played six games of Nuclear War for the tournament.  In two games, no players survived, which is the best possible outcome if the chosen player (me, for instance) can't win.  I, by the way, contributed significantly to the extermination of life as we know it on earth.  The tournament came down to three finalists; the nameless man on my left, Mike, and myself.  In the final game I started the war right away, launching at the player next to me.  Mike landed a few missiles in my backyard, and I responded in kind.  Then Mike dropped a big one on my neighbor and wiped him out.  He went out with a bang, but not a loud bang.  Mike and I continued to exchange whiz-bangs until my country was bereft of human beings, and that was that.

Mike won the tournament.

Mike's prize is the much-coveted, not for sale at any price, super-germ alarm clock, as shown below.

First Prize - The Super Germ Alarm Clock
Mike's been trying for years to win one of these, so I was happy for him.  What a way to end the day!

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