I don’t usually post about it here, but one of my other big hobbies is ice skating. This year I’ve gone bigger and better with my back yard ice rink. Pictured above you can see the fancy lighting I installed this year. And with nobody to help me, it’s been all me working by myself for many weekends in a row. Perhaps that’s why I almost missed running any games at TotalCon.
I knew the deadline for game submission was December 20th, so like any good procrastinator I figured I had at least until December 19th to figure out what I was going to run. Also I was being gummed up by not having a good idea for a new horror game. Every year I run a horror game on Thursday night, and every year I get this same group of gamers at my table, and they’re awesome. It’s happened three years in a row now, and has been the primary motivation for me writing new horror adventures. I just can’t let them down.
Then just this afternoon I saw this post on Facebook from the TotalCon organizers:
Friday and Saturday are booked? I thought I still had two weeks! I had no idea the times could fill up, but apparently they can and simply haven’t in the past. What am I supposed to do now, just be a player? “Focus,” I told myself, “get a horror game listed for Thursday night or you’ll be really upset.”
So I took stock of what I had. I had one half-baked idea that’s just really not ready. And while I have in the past submitted a description of a game that didn’t exist just to put myself under the gun to get it written, in those cases I at least had a good idea to start with. There was only one thing left to do – run someone else’s work.
A while back I was looking for some examples of system-less horror scenarios and stumbled on Hebanon Games on DriveThruRPG. I bought several of them and read through a couple. There was some good stuff there — I guess I could run one of those. It feels a bit unnatural to not run my own stuff. I really enjoyed using my convention runs of these games as play tests so I could refine and edit my work. Heck, the whole reason I was looking for system-less horror scenarios in the first place was that I was contemplating publishing my own. But I can’t not run something. I guess I’ll just have to chalk it up as research.
The one bit of solace I found was here in my own blog. I wrote an entry just before last year’s TotalCon where I posted my schedule. It looks like last year I ran the majority of my stuff on Thursday and Sunday. I know I like to leave Saturday night open for the Car Wars game and later viewing of Rocky Horror. The one Friday night game I signed up to run flopped and I ended up playing in that time slot anyway. So I guess my schedule really isn’t all that different from last year after all.
That is of course, assuming the games I just submitted get accepted. If not, I don’t know, I guess I can always stay home and ice skate.