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Would anyone be interested in a Protospiel in the NorthEast/New England Area?

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RacNRoll Gaming
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I have been talking to Dralius about the possibility of bringing Protospiel to this part of the country and was trying to gauge interest if there were enough folks out there interested.

If for some reason you do not know what Protospiel is go check it out.

www.protospiel.org

Aerjen
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Protospiel in Europe

Well, actually I'd be mainly interested in Protospiel being also held in Europe.

truekid games
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isn't the gottingen game

isn't the gottingen game designer con in germany like a larger and more established protospiel?

Dralius
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truekid games wrote:isn't the

truekid games wrote:
isn't the gottingen game designer con in germany like a larger and more established protospiel?

Do they have a website? I would like to see what they are doing.

Edit> I did find out a little. It's for showing off you games to publishers which would be great to do with Prostospiel if publishers were interested in that format. As it is we have a hard time just getting more than two to show up mosy years

RacNRoll Gaming
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Doesn't look like they
truekid games
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here's where to register, i

here's where to register, i believe: http://perlhuhn.de/termine.html

(under the Spieleautorentreffen in Göttingen heading)

jwarrend
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We'll be holding our

We'll be holding our quarterly playtest gathering "Spielbany" this weekend and, while I won't be there, I can see if the other organizers want to talk this up over the weekend and see if there's any interest in something like this. I know we pitched the idea of renting a house for a few days for playtesting and gaming a couple of times in the past and there was never very much interest in pursuing this.

For myself, I'm kind of on the fence for whether I'd be interested in this or not. I attended PowWow a few years ago and while it was fun, I think it was, in hindsight, mostly a waste of time, at least in the sense of propelling designs forward. It was nice to meet other designers and network, but I don't know if was too helpful beyond that; I think I got one useful playtest out of the 4 days I was there. If it was in the northeast, that might help. If there were going to be publishers present, that would help a lot. Alternatively, if it was going to be very small -- ie less than 10 people -- that would make me much more likely to participate. And of course, it would depend on when it was held.

RacNRoll Gaming
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I will keep you posted as we

I will keep you posted as we get things in motion....

I think your concerns will not be an issue as we will pay special attention to scheduling to make sure everyone gets the most out of it.

The only thing I cant say is that it would not be as small as 10 people or less...however working to ensure there are numerous playtests going on over the weekend will not be an issue.

Semantics and details will be worked out once we have some sort of grasp on how well this will be met with the designers out there.

jwarrend
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Of course; I wouldn't

Of course; I wouldn't actually expect you to have a low attendance, and I'd suspect you'd probably get a bigger turnout. My point was simply to say that I don't have very much interest in big-group gatherings. I just like very small group gatherings better -- I think they're more productive and more enjoyable. I don't think mine is a very widely held preference.

RacNRoll Gaming
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jwarrend wrote:Of course; I

jwarrend wrote:
Of course; I wouldn't actually expect you to have a low attendance, and I'd suspect you'd probably get a bigger turnout. My point was simply to say that I don't have very much interest in big-group gatherings. I just like very small group gatherings better -- I think they're more productive and more enjoyable. I don't think mine is a very widely held preference.

No I completely get it...my goal is to give a big gathering a small gathering feel. :-)

Dralius
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A Question

jwarrend wrote:
Of course; I wouldn't actually expect you to have a low attendance, and I'd suspect you'd probably get a bigger turnout. My point was simply to say that I don't have very much interest in big-group gatherings. I just like very small group gatherings better -- I think they're more productive and more enjoyable. I don't think mine is a very widely held preference.

Im curious from the stand point of an event organizer, why do you feel you get more out of small gatherings or less out of large ones?

Personally I like small groups myself but get allot more done at Protospiel then say my other testing done at Game Cons or having people over to my place.

jwarrend
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Dralius wrote:Im curious from

Dralius wrote:
Im curious from the stand point of an event organizer, why do you feel you get more out of small gatherings or less out of large ones?

I think it's just a matter of personal preference more than anything else. Part of it is the same reason I'll go to a weekly game night at a friend's house for a couple of hours but will probably never set foot in a game convention if I can at all avoid it. But having attended Pow Wow once and having hosted and attended Spielbany for the last 6 years, it's just been my experience that the small gatherings -- eg 4-5 designers -- work better than the big gatherings for really digging down into designs and getting constructive feedback.

If I had to guess why that was the case, I'd say there are a couple of reasons. The first is reciprocity; there's a higher level of implied reciprocity when the same 4 designers test all 4 of the games -- you gave me feedback on my game so I'm going to give you quality feedback on yours. The attitude of "that's nice, now what are we playing next?" that sometimes pops up is inherently suppressed with a smaller group. There's less concern with time-meshing: eg, "the four other tables are done with their games and they're waiting for us to finish so we need to rush through our endgame and curtail the comments so we can shuffle up the tables again."

The biggest one is probably this, and it goes to a bigger issue I've found in my years designing games: game designers are shameless self-promoters. Nothing surprising about that, you almost have to promote yourself to get your game noticed. My problem is simply that I find self-promotion tedious and irritating, and I hate having to do it myself (even though I probably do). But here's the thing: at big get-togethers, the most assertive people get the most table-time. I don't enjoy sitting around having my games not get played because I'm too unwilling to "stoop" to the level of self-promotion that these big events require.

I think it just boils down to this: I never used to understand the comments people would make about gaming being more about social interaction than playing games, but now I really do. Not that I play games exclusively for social interaction, but that I really only enjoy gaming when it's in a good social climate. For whatever reason, four friends sitting around a table at someone's house playing a game just feels more "authentic" than 25 people who barely know each other hanging out at a rented room at the VFW. It just feels more like genuine adult social interaction. I can't put my finger on why that is, but there you have it.

-Jeff

scifiantihero
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Yes . . .

. . . bringing it to this area would be a cool idea, I think.

I know if I ever get games ready for that level of testing, it sounds like an awesome place to meet people and get work/fun done!

:)

Dralius
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jwarrend wrote: If I had to

jwarrend wrote:

If I had to guess why that was the case, I'd say there are a couple of reasons. The first is reciprocity; there's a higher level of implied reciprocity when the same 4 designers test all 4 of the games -- you gave me feedback on my game so I'm going to give you quality feedback on yours. The attitude of "that's nice, now what are we playing next?" that sometimes pops up is inherently suppressed with a smaller group. There's less concern with time-meshing: eg, "the four other tables are done with their games and they're waiting for us to finish so we need to rush through our endgame and curtail the comments so we can shuffle up the tables again."

The biggest one is probably this, and it goes to a bigger issue I've found in my years designing games: game designers are shameless self-promoters. Nothing surprising about that, you almost have to promote yourself to get your game noticed. My problem is simply that I find self-promotion tedious and irritating, and I hate having to do it myself (even though I probably do). But here's the thing: at big get-togethers, the most assertive people get the most table-time. I don't enjoy sitting around having my games not get played because I'm too unwilling to "stoop" to the level of self-promotion that these big events require.-Jeff

Last year we had a record crowd over 40 people including our guests making it at times crowded and noisy. Mostly just Saturday afternoon but it was otherwise manageable. This year I am hoping we will at least have that level of participation so I have booked a room more than twice the size to help elevate the problem.

Last year was also out first year to experiment with time sheets to help keep things fair. I find that people are generally fair minded but are often not keeping track of how much of other people’s time they use. Our time sheets have columns to keep track of how much time you donate and how many man hours you use. This is not mandatory but there as an awareness tool. Everyone I spoke to was happy with the amount of table time they had. We also allow people to attend as testers, people that are not testing their own games. This too increased the table time for everyone.

With little changes each year i strive to keep the benefits of the small Protospiel of years past and still facilitate as many designers as possible. I think even with the significant growth over the last 2 years we still have a casual friendly atmosphere. If that were to change I would certainly rethink the steps that got us there.

InvisibleJon
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Time tracking tactics...

Dralius wrote:
Last year was also out first year to experiment with time sheets to help keep things fair. I find that people are generally fair minded but are often not keeping track of how much of other people’s time they use. Our time sheets have columns to keep track of how much time you donate and how many man hours you use. This is not mandatory but there as an awareness tool. Everyone I spoke to was happy with the amount of table time they had.
With Protospiel South 2010 coming in two weeks, this is something I've been thinking about a lot. I was originally going to create a big tracker for everyone, then realized that it would be quasi-fascist and a lot of work. Later, I was going to make a game out if it, with token exchanging and such, but I was still worried about being a control freak. Before reading your note above, I'd decided that I wouldn't worry about it at all; I'd just let people play and run games as they saw fit. Having read your solution (creating an opt-in structure), I'm wondering if I should implement that.

Hmmmnnn...

slam
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I live in Boston, so if it

I live in Boston, so if it were close enough I'd definitely be interested.

Keldarris
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I would be interested in

I would be interested in this. You might even try the organiziers of Total Confusion. Game Conventions run all the time, and usually where their are game cons, there are gamers.

RacNRoll Gaming
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Keldarris wrote:I would be

Keldarris wrote:
I would be interested in this. You might even try the organiziers of Total Confusion. Game Conventions run all the time, and usually where their are game cons, there are gamers.

We actually ran the Heroscape events at TotalCon this year and will be back there next year with both Heroscape and Summoner Wars.

Not sure it is ideal to run a Protospiel within a regular game convention however we could definitely cross promote with Steven, Angelita and the rest of the folks from TotalCon

MantisMan1970
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Yes

yes I would be very much interested, if anyone is getting something together please contact me..

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