Metatopia Post-Con Report

This past weekend saw me at the annual Metatopia convention in Morristown, NJ. Metatopia is run by Double Exposure, the same folks who put on the Dreamation and Dexcon conventions (the latter now including the old-school OSWARP con as a featured subset), as well as the First Exposure playtest hall at GenCon. It caters to game designers, publishers, etc. and hooks them up with eager playtesters to get feedback on new games coming in the pipeline. There are also a bunch of seminars in several tracks, and the whole thing is an invaluable experience for the aspiring game publisher or designer.

I was on several panels myself, attended a bunch more, and overall had a great time (despite a bit of a stomach bug on Friday night that seems to have hit a few other people besides me). There were a bunch of high points (the afore-mentioned seminars, as well as getting to talk with some of the luminaries of the industry at the bar), and a couple of low points (some of the seminars veered too deeply into the PC end of the pool for my taste, but hey, if folks want to fret about the impact of HP Lovecraft’s racism on game design, that’s their time to waste), but on the whole I had a great time.

Here are just a handful of the hundreds of games that were being playtested (all these photos were taken with permission, so no trade secrets are being revealed, I hope):

You don’t see that many games about medieval Africa

Using Lego as a prototyping tool

Some games were simple in layout

Some were a bit more complex

Some were very polished for a prototype

You can see a mix of bits and pieces in this one

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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.