Furnace was great as always. Been every year, coined a catch phrase, nominated it for victory in the convention awards and well, yeah, I know, I’m nothing to do with organising it, but I’m going to steal whatever reflected glory I can get just for showing up…
Furnace is an “All About the Games” roleplaying convention in Sheffield that caters for 80 passionate souls, all keen on their widely diverse taste in games and you can get to play all manner of things in this great little con taking place in a sandstone army barracks. All my games were run in the cells. Nice.
I’ve been peripherally aware of this game for a little while now but had never had the chance to play. When I saw it on the list at this years Furnace I grabbed the chance to give it a go. My preconceptions were that the game was indie, it’s focus is on fighting as a space marine against a horde of aliens, that success is measured in kills, and that’s about it. Turns out I was right.
Furnace starts on a Saturday morning, but unofficially some delegates meet up on the Friday, with one or two organisers for a pint. I’ve done this once before out of the previous three Furnaces, and as some of the Smart Party were joining in this time, we thought we may as well make a proper weekend of it. Friday rush hour traffic being what it is, even finishing at half three with their lazy part-time-teacher hours Lemur and G2 couldn’t get to mine until after seven, but that still left us plenty of time to get up to Sheffield for a few social ones.
…right, let’s try this blogging lark…
…wonder what this button do…
Inspired by the weekend’s events, I’ve decided to try my hands at using my fingers to wordalise some of my own gaming thoughts. They are few and far between, and that’s why I’m hiding them behind a few introductory words of guff. At worst, they’ll give Evilgaz apathetic headaches. At best, they’ll give him dyspeptic ulcers, and provide some light relief or deep thoughts for the rest of us.
This year I attended my first Furnace, a smallish con held in Sheffield, now in it’s 4th year. The Smart Party were four strong for this outing, and between us we had 8 games to run that covered the gamut of gaming.
The location was really cool, a converted gaolhouse including the original cells to play in. There was a cosy bar that served excellent food. I’d have liked it to stay open a little later but they had beer in vending machines for the desperate, so not so bad after all. The rooms were ‘motel’ like, which means they were fine for getting your head down, but not for much else. That’s all I need from a Con though, and at £25 a night I can’t complain. Breakfast was perfunctory, but appreciated after a long night of game talk.
I’m set to run two games at this year’s Furnace. Here’s what the frothing horde will see at the sign up scrum…
The Fey Team
The Night Riders
I’ve been working up a set of characters for Furnace. This is (one of) what I’ve got so far.
It’s a Word Doc designed to be printed 2 pages to a sheet making it an A5 booklet. You’ll see it as pages 2,3,4,1.
I’m going for ease of use at the table mostly. There’s still some tinkering to do, but overall I’m fairly happy. My IT skills are pretty basic, and I’m sure it could be a lot more colourful and professional. Still, first effort and all that.
EDIT: My USB flash drive containing this and many, many more Mb of gaming goodness has just died. All data lost. At least I still have this sheet.
Furnace is my big Convention this year and I’ve just sent in my two games for inclusion. I’m going with two games of D&D 4e, both set at 5th level and the stories play off of each other (slightly). I’m going with my ‘Feywild and Shadowfell at war’ theme. The first game is ‘The Fey Team’ and is an assassination mission behind enemy ley lines. The second is ‘Night Rider’ and tells a similar tale from the Shadow perspective, except with sabotage in mind. Hope I get some players!
It is with some interest that I keep an eye on the Earthdawn brand. A great game picked up some time ago by Redbrick on the other side of the world, they announced recently a third, revamped edition of the game, with Mongoose and their Flaming Cobra project. Still wondering how that’s going to work out, and indeed if it’s going to produce something more user-friendly to newbies at conventions, because a one-shot really doesn’t show this bad boy off properly.
The official dice are out as well, which look funky. Q Workshop are going to be at Tentacles next weekend too, so I might have to buy the dice and then run the game. Earthdawn at Furnace maybe?