Origins 2007: "I can't go back to yesterday..."
Reported by Robert Posada, Illuminati Liaison.
"...because I was a different person then"
After many years' absence, I returned on July 5 to the Origins Game Convention in Columbus, Ohio.
En route to Columbus I ran into Dan Donnelley of Kenzer & Co. Dan and I met in the old Living City days under WotC's RPGA. He was the head of the campaign (now defunct); around the same time, I ran the Bards' Guild.
What I saw there
I had a weird schedule the first day of the show. I had just enough time to get my badge and do a quick run through the dealers' room before heading back to Indianapolis International Airport. (I was heading out of the country into Canada on other business, but would be back the next day.)
Before leaving, though, I saw a strange sight. Plush Cthulhu dolls, as if spewed from the dark recess of some child's mind.
Barely holding on to my sanity, I fled the blasphemous table.
I then heard a melodious call, siren-like, luring me away. A flaxen-haired beauty emitted the seducing song. She was a Dark Visions model, cat o' nine tails and all. She let me snap this shot and hinted at darker things that I needed to see at their booth...
I continued my sanity-restoring retreat, to Kayuda, an online collaboration for world building. Their specialty is maps: you can create and upload your world maps and either keep them safely isolated or share with other world builders. This project is currently in Alpha testing but it is worth checking out.
If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there
With only a few minutes remaining in my pre-flight run, I headed over to the miniatures room next door.
Going to Origins is like stepping Through the Looking Glass. This caterpillar, hookah and all, only made it seem more real. It's a large miniature (sort of like the Insecta macrotures) for a game running here.
Completing the Lewis Carroll fantasy: this tree made of playing cards.
Origins is a big show, and game companies compete for the gamers' attention. One way to draw in a crowd is with a good sign. Some go big and fancy, like this...
...while others go big and simple, like this.
Conventions are one of the few places where you can see gaming labors of love. For example, the beautiful arabian desert-style structure in this photo.
Out of time, I passed the convention registration area on my way out. It was a slow period, so it was mostly empty.
If you are going to a convention, I strongly recommend getting your badge ahead of time (it's on the Chimera convention checklist). It helps guarantee a place for you, especially at cons like Origins where events get sold out quickly.