Conventions

MAGACON 2011 – Thoughts

 
 

About MAGACON:

MaGaCon is Malaysia’s first annual independent Analog and Digital gaming convention run by Gamers for Gamers. It is a gathering of the gaming culture in Malaysia and a chance for people to experience the gaming culture and lifestyle of Malaysia.

 

Every major type of game will be offered for people who come to MaGaCon. Come enjoy LAN games in the PC gaming section, or watch massive armies fight in the Miniature section, or gather your group together to play at the board games tables and finally for those who wish to put their fantasy into reality you can play in the Rifts LARP.

 

Finally for hardcore people who live, sleep and eat gaming there is the GamerLympics where your gaming skills will be pushed to the limit.

For two days gamers from all over Malaysia will get together to play, compete, laugh and share their love of gaming.

JC and I attended MAGACON with the people from boardgamecafe, we had nothing but fun there! Although it’s in a smaller scale than I thought, it was quite interesting to see all types of games – PC game, boardgame, console, miniature/tabletop games, card games etc – all in one place.

Limited edition MAGACON dice! Want one? 😛

JC: Initially, we received got 2 dice each from our goodie bags because we pre-registered about 2 weeks ago but because I joined the GamerLympics, I got another 10 more for making it to the top 32 =D! If you haven’t seen the dice, it’s quite big and nice to use =D! It would’ve been cooler if MGC represented the number 6 but it’s number 1 instead but no worries, it’s still awesome =)!

Day 1 – The Fight for King of Catan Continues
 
If you’re reading this then probably you’re aware of the progress of the Settlers of Catan tournament in the past few weeks. Qualifiers were held in various boardgame cafes, and the last of the qualifier round was held on the day of MAGACON itself. This was followed by the finals later in that afternoon.
 
 

The prize? 15th anniversary edition of Settlers of Catan. Awesome! Various versions of Catan were brought to the table that day- new, old and not forgetting turkish too.

 
There were enough players that day for 3 tables of Catan in the qualifying round that morning. The winners of each tables were joined by others who qualified previously, in the run for the Catan Cup.
 
CK sat through the game with the Final Four.

 
So who won the 15th Anniversary Catan set? I suspect someone else would update on that later on, so I’ll just keep quiet for now!
 
 

What about me? I qualified for the Catan Finals too. Well… That was just luck. I never stood a chance against these guys! Well I didn’t like the game anyway it’s a luck game it has dice in it who wants the 15th anniversary Catan anyway it’s not a fun game yes I’m so bitter 😛

Jokes aside, these guys were really good! I only had 5 or 6 points when the leading guy got his 10th victory point.

 
Who’s the Biggest Spender?
 

After wrapping up the Catan tournament, nothing big was scheduled and the crowd has gotten thinner as dinner time approached. I sat down for a game of Last Will – a new game at Essen this year.

 
I liked the artwork and the components of the game. The theme was rather unique too. Often we play to acquire money/victory points. In this game, the goal is to be the first to bankrupt! The gameplay was simple but somewhat confusing to me at first – especially the action and activation part, but everyone picked up the game rather quickly. I was the first to go bankrupt in the game!
 
 

Warhammer

On the other side of the hall, there was a Warhammer 40k tournament going on as well. Each of the players were equipped with an impressive team! I can look at their painted miniatures the all day long!

I was interested in getting into the hobby, so I dropped by their booth and the people were really nice! We attended the painting workshop too, there was an amazing guy who taught us how to paint miniatures – from drybrush to washing etc.

 
JC and I painted a couple of space marines – mine in red and hers in blue. Just looking at the base, you can tell that she’s obviously the better painter.

JC: Haha! I think our mentor had a headache with us because we were suppose to dry brush it and not cover all the creases but I couldn’t help it! My OCD-ness made me need to cover all possible areas =P! Haha! Our mentor keep saying “Don’t worry, that can be fixed.” but I think after a while, he realized that we had loads of fun painting it the wrong way xD!

I thought Jun Yet’s gun looked more used and I couldn’t understand the concept of using the brush horizontally instead of using it vertically to paint the raised areas. Only on the second day, I understood how to do that and it definitely looked way better! I love Devlan Mud the most! Makes a HUGE difference =D!

 
 

Moving on!

Gamerlympics

One of the main events at MAGACON was Gamerlympics, where gamers compete in various games of different category, and the winner would walk away with a PAID trip to US Penny Arcade Expo. I have no idea what’s that by the way. Anyway I guess any PAID trip is goooooood.
 

 
Games played includes – Pacman(!!!!), some dancing game using Xbox with motion sensor, Magic the Gathering, Settlers of Catan, Tower Defense, and Dirt (some  sort of racing game).
 
 
It’s like a cyber cafe there. Free gaming for everyone!
 
 

JC: I remember asking CK “Can I go play PacMan?” which was then followed by Magic the Gathering from 5pm to 8pm+ because each person had to play with 3 different opponents for 3 times so that was 9 games.

When I first heard that M:tG was part of the GamerLympics, I was discouraged to join it since I have never played M:tG before but after having a tutorial on how to play and getting a free deck, I just thought “Heck! Why not?”. It must be hard playing against a girl because if a guy beats a girl, he’s a bully but if he loses.. It’s bad either way =P!

Anyway, I was proud to say that out of the 8 games played, I won 3 games and tied for one game =D! I thought that was quite good for an absolute newbie xD!

 
JC joined the Gamerlympics and went quite far, partly due to the fact that they didn’t have enough players to compete with. They were supposed to have the last 32 players from the Magic the Gathering round to advance to the next round on Day 2, but they only had 18 players still playing at the end of Day 1. Nevertheless, she had quite a lot of fun meeting people and playing Magic. Not so fun for our tummy though! Day 1 ended around 9pm.
 
 
 
Day 2 – Catan in Gamerlympics
 
As mentioned earlier, gamers had to sit down and play through a game of Catan as part of the Gamerlympics! To me this was an amazing experience, to be able to teach people who are new to this category of gaming – boardgaming. Just seeing this huge amount of new people learning to play ANY board game is a breathtaking scene indeed!
 

Ironically, JC lost in this round! But anyway she won 4 Magic boosters for coming to this stage.

JC: I give chance to other people la! *excuse excuse*

Not to mention a few starter decks too. How generous of them!

No age limit for boardgames!

There’s a fever starting up!

We had a chance to bring Startup Fever to the table that day. It was the first kickstarter that we pledged together in the forum, which subsequently led to a surge in other kickstarter threads in the forum. After waiting for around half a year, the game finally arrived on friday! I went through the rulebook and we had the first play of the game, in the first MAGACON!
 

In this game, players represent companies and they have 2 products each under development. At the start, the products were developed in “stealth mode” or closed beta testing. There were 4 categories of product – media, e commerce, social networking and communication. Each product only competes within the category, so it’s pretty thematic. At year end, better products from each category will draw users from other player’s product, which makes sense too.

I liked the way the tension builds up towards the end of the game, where competition for users was a huge factor and everyone was poaching nerds from other companies.

The game was quite tight in the end, the scores were close. There was some question about how does “user loss” fit the game thematically. Frankly, I’m not sure myself despite a search for answers on boardgamegeek.  During the “User Loss’ phase, launched products roll die to determine how many users other companies lose, which seemed odd indeed. Probably some last minute addition to balance the game?

Going once.. Going twice…. SOLD!

Believe it or not, an auction was held! I was pretty excited actually, to see how people bid and counter bid for items. At the end of the day, a motherboard and a high end graphic card were auctioned off – at less than half the price. What a bargain!! I wished I had brought enough cash to buy the graphic card, I didn’t know that there will be an auction taking place that day.

JC: Aiya! If I knew you wanted, I would’ve lent you the RM300+ that I had =P!

RM200? Do I see RM 210? What? Rm 250! Going once.. going twice……

The Painting Demon

I’m not kidding. The winner takes home a pewter painting demon trophy or some sort.

It’s a painting competition, for both professionals and beginners like myself. JC and I went over to the booth and started painting hobbits today, expecting nothing when we submitted our painted miniatures to the competition booth.

Careful not to sneeze while painting!

JC: Initially, I “chin chai” (simply) painted my hobbit but when I heard there was a competition, I quickly painted a space marine properly! Who knew that my beloved “clash of colours” hobbit won =D!

If you can’t see the hobbit properly, the hair was gold, the shirt was red, the pants were green and the cape was blue so you could imagine the headache our mentor had after seeing that xD!

Well, to our surprise, we won in the Beginner Category!

JC won the painting brush, while I won the painting set!

JC: When they first announced the 3rd place winner, I was like “Aww mann….” because i thought the most I could win was third place even if the prize was 10 MGC dice so you could imagine the huge shock I had when I was announced as the second place winner! I was literally ECSTATIC!! 

Funny thing was, Jun Yet wasn’t the first announced winner =P! They actually accidentally called the name of the professional category then they said “Oops! Wrong person.” which was when I felt bad for the person (because I didn’t know he was in the pro category) so again I was SHOCKED when “Wong Jun Yet” was announced the first place winner for the Beginners category! Congrats Jun yet =D! It actually looks great =D!

The painted miniatures were showcased on a table, to be judged later. They look kind of impressive together. Some of the people submitted really good, pro paintwork – as seen in the picture above (the red guy, bottom left). JC also painted the blue space marine in the picture. I thought that it was really pretty.

My personal favorite. Not sure which model won the Pro category though.
Top: my hobbit. I think I painted the cape quite nicely hehe.Bottom: JC’s hobbit.

JC: I gave my painted hobbit a little more work before submitting it and I added a silver outline to the shirt, pants and the cape, which made it look better (surprisingly xD!).

Lucky Draw – Santa came early

It was our lucky day. Really. JC shouted in disbelief when my number was called out – I won a HUGE bean bag!!!!!!

The bean bad was as big as me!

At first I was rather disappointed, as a girl won the Warhammer set in the lucky draw, right before my number was drawn. I really wanted the Warhammer set! Then someone came up with a brilliant idea – to trade my bean bag for the Warhammer set.

WOW. Just WOW. After some struggle, she gave in to the big comfy bean bag, and I went home with my precious Warhammer set!

 

 

It was a really awesome day for me. First we get the paint brush. Then we get the painting set. Then at the end of the day, we get the miniatures! The day just get better and better!

JC: It was as if there is a Santa up there working his miracles in his own way because Jun Yet really wanted to buy this exact set as it was a great starter set for 2 players and he was quite ready to buy it too! Thank you very much Esther, for being our Santarina and making Jun Yet so very happy.

 
 

JC: Thank you so much CK =D! Words really can’t describe how much fun we had and how happy we are to be a part of this awesome convention!

 

JC: Jun Yet forgotten to mention that there were about 7-9 motion sensor “thingys” that were loads of fun!! I had fun dancing to Lady Gaga and many other random songs with Kah May and I even did a few solo dances =P!

Important fact to note: I fell on my bum twice during the two days that I was playing with these games =P! Once while I was racing with Jun Yet and once more while we were trying to maneuver a raft. However, being able to slice fruits at Fruit Ninja with my leg was really fun so if you ever see any of these demo sets, feel free to try them out! It is quite fun =D!

That’s all for now. we really had lots of fun at the convention. If you guys are around next year, be sure to attend this event! Thanks BGC for giving us volunteers not one, but TWO limited edition MAGACON Catan shirt, for buying us lunch and most of all for letting us to be a part of this big event!
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