Dexcon/OSWARP 2014

Well it’s been an exhausting five days, but another Dexcon is now behind us, and the first-ever OSWARP as well.

OSWARP went really well, even if attendance was a little under our expectations. Hopefully next year we’ll grow, and will eventually be able to go solo. As it currently stands, OSWARP 2015 will again be co-located with Dexcon in Morristown in the first weekend in July.

The old school team dungeon crawl

One of the highlights was the Old School Team Dungeon Crawl. What a sight to see a map 36′ on a side, with five teams of players all wandering through the dungeon at the same time. One team had a strategy of knocking out the other teams, and took out two of its rivals. Victory went to a different team, however, that concentrated on exploring and wracking up gold (which is how victory was counted). Everyone seemed to have a good time, and I’m really looking forward to doing this again next year.

The various OSWARP events seemed to go well. Michael Curtis was there running a bunch of Dungeon Crawl Classics games, and they seemed to be well-attended and enthusiastically supported. There was an Arduin game that I really wish I could have played in, and other assorted RPGs, either from the classic years or modern OSR games. I myself ran Tomb of Horrors using the AD&D 1st Edition rules, and it was a great time; three PCs killed, three teleported out of the tomb stark naked. That’s what I call a successful adventure. 🙂

Special thanks go out to “Badmike”, who sent along a box of old Judges Guild material to hand out as swag. Most generous, and most appreciated!

The new D&D Starter Set was a big hit

Dexcon as a whole was a lot of fun, with tons of games of all sorts, including the ever-colorful wargame room. Saturday and Sunday had a macro-scale Star Trek game which looked awesome. I also got to play in a 5th Edition game on Thursday, which was a lot of fun.

Speaking of 5th Edition, naturally this weekend saw the debut of the Starter Set and the Basic Rules. One of the dealers had a stack of Starter Sets, and they did a brisk business. I got the very first one they sold at the con, as a matter of fact. I’ll be posting much more about the game in coming weeks, but my cautious optimism seems to have been justified. It’s a good game.

Another highlight of the convention was the “Greyhawk Reborn” folks. They’re doing a 5th edition based Living Campaign set in Greyhawk (with Wizards’ knowledge, which amounts to tacit approval). They’re certainly enthusiastic enough, and their tables always seemed to be full. Of course, being the Greyhawk fan that I am, it’s something that I’ve been keeping an eye on, especially since it’s based in my neck of the woods, but it was great seeing it in action and talking to some of the guys. Their campaign is set in (I believe) CY 611, which puts it outside my normal time-frame, but still something to look for. I’m sure they’ll be expanding their convention presence in the future. (Here’re their Yahoo and Facebook pages; I don’t think they have a straight-up website.)

Written by 

Wargamer and RPG'er since the 1970's, author of Adventures Dark and Deep, Castle of the Mad Archmage, and other things, and proprietor of the Greyhawk Grognard blog.

2 thoughts on “Dexcon/OSWARP 2014

  1. I think part of the attendance thing might be the natural result of being on the July 4th weekend … one of the main target audiences for OSWARP are old enough to have family gatherings & vacations planned. Glad it will be coming back, some year I will have a job with weekends free I hope. Oh well at least I got my copy of CotMA from the BRW sale to start looking over.

  2. Glad the Judges Guild goodies were a hit! Sounds like the con within a con did ok and 4th of July weekend is a tough time to have a con. Hope to make it up there sometime, and it's great to see so many smaller cons now catering to the old schoolers among us.

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