If this is the first time you heard of our Boardgame Retreat or you have been contemplating attending one of our Retreats, you may have questions that we hope this FAQ would be able to help with.
1. What’s the “real experience” like of going to this Retreat as opposed to attending a regular meetup?
Meetups usually comprised of the same set of people. In a Retreat – and in our World Cafe model – you’ll get to play with different groups of gamers in these two days, and across different types of games (and since 2013, mostly Essen Spiel’s latest releases). It’s like a whirlwind tour and it can be “intensely exhausting” (in a good way of course) to some gamers.
2. Do I need to stay the full course ie attend both days?
Yes you do.
We appreciate if you do since we plan the Retreat on the assumption all gamers stay the course – and not leave early. This is to ensure everyone gets the same set of experience till the end. If you have some engagement that requires you not to be able to participate in all the gaming sessions (except the After-8 session as that’s optional) or need to leave early on Sun, then we would suggest you reconsider this event until you are able to free up your time. Sorry if we sound “rude” here but we simply want to ensure a good overall experience for everyone. 🙂
Also note our door gift and promos (40% discount on games) are only given to gamers who have completed both Retreat days in full.
3. I do not know many games. Is there someone who’ll teach us how to play?
Yes, that’s part of the attraction of the Retreat – you do not have to read rules (if reading rules bore you) as we’ve facilitators who are happy to explain the rules to you. You’ll get to learn a lot of new games over a compact weekend! We’ve mentioned it earlier, it’s intensely exhausting yet at the same time awesomely FUN!
4. I do not play “heavy euro games”. Would the games fit me?
Yes. The format of the Retreat only allows for short to medium length games to be played since we want to rotate thru as many games as possible in the 2 days of gaming. You won’t find (too) heavy or brain-burning games like Arkwright, Age of Steam, TI4 or any of the 18xx. Most of the games fall in the 60 – 90 minutes rating with one or two rounds of 120 minutes type of games. We do expect our Retreat attendees to be comfortable playing games that last up to 2 hrs.
For the After-8 session you are however free to propose / suggest games to play during the After-8 session and in the past, we’ve done 1856 (a real heavy), Dune (the original Dune) and there’ve been talks of TI4 (ooooh).
5. Is there a discount to the Retreat Fee?
There’s usually an Early Bird fee and beyond that, we do not offer any group or other discounts. The Retreat seats are on limited first-come-first-served basis (secured with deposit / full payment).
6. Is the deposit / fee refundable?
Unfortunately no. We are keeping the retreat gamer count to a low number so that we can ensure a fantastic experience for everyone (unlike a convention). The deposit/fee is to guarantee your seat. However if you can’t make it and you can find a replacement gamer to take your seat, the deposit/fee is transferable to your replacement. Obviously all your benefits & promos would transfer to your replacement as well. 😛
7. When do I have to pay the balance?
We’ll advise you shortly but we reckon we’ll ask for the balance a few weeks before the Retreat actual.
8. Will you extend the number to accommodate more gamers?
Not likely. We explicitly chose the word “Retreat” – instead of meetup, convention, or gathering – as we wanted to create a deeper and more meaningful playing experience of a smaller – and more intimate – group of people. Increasing the headcount would mean we’ll likely deteriorate the gaming experience. What’s more important for us is to ensure the attendees leave the Retreat with a Feel-Good experience and not pack more people into the event.
p/s We are planning a more free-n-easy one-day convention which can cater to a larger group of attendees. But for now, we would still want to keep our Boardgame Retreat as a special intimate event.
9. Can I give the 40% game discount to a friend? Are there any games I cannot use the rebate on? Is there a time limit to this offer?
We don’t really mind who “owns” the discounted game but you’ll need to make the purchase yourself since we validate the purchase by your name/attendance at the retreat. We won’t accept an order from someone who call us up and say, “Hi, my fren Joe went for your retreat and I’m calling to buy this game at 40%”. Joe will need to come and buy from us.
So yes, you can buy the game and give it to someone (doesn’t matter to us) as long as you make the purchase personally.
The 40% game discount offer expires 3 months after Retreat date and you’ll need to complete the Retreat (ie stay until end of 2nd Day) in order to qualify for the 40% discount voucher. There’ll be some games excluded from this promo, namely the latest Essen Spiel arrivals, Kickstarter Editions, some titles with low retailer margin, etc. A list would be circulated to all Retreat attendees.
10. If I do not wish to take any or some of the meals at the venue, can I get a rebate?
Unfortunately no. One of the reasons we are including meals in our Retreat is to improve from 2011’s experience of the infamous Mexican PD dinner which literally cost us the tempo to do a good After-8 session. Given the location this time is not near any food place, we set for dinner to be taken at the Retreat to allow us more time for either After-8 session or your own free-n-easy within the Retreat venue.
We are however not arranging dinner for Sunday (Day 2). That’s when the attendees can self-organize how – and where – they wish to have dinner and have some non-gaming together time. We’ll have recommendations and welcome anyone to join us but you are free to follow your stomach’s instinct. 😛
11. Are the food halal? Vegetarian?
Yes the food is halal. If you have requirements for special diet eg vegetarian, pls let us know when you sign up.
12. What type of accommodation are we staying in?
You’ll be staying on twin/quad sharing basis which has two double beds that can fit two/four people. If you wish for more privacy, we may be able to provide options to upgrade to twin or single room (at additional cost, subject to availability of rooms). Do ask us for the upgrade cost.
Note: We are no longer offering this “upgrade” option since it can make it challenging for us in getting the right mix of rooms/beds for the participants. Sorry, it’ll be solely organized based on the number of participants (male vs female) and into as many quad-sharing rooms as we could. However participants may – on their own – book a twin-sharing room at the venue (if still available) at their own cost and move to stay there on Sat night. There shall be no refund or discount on the Retreat fee. 😛
13. Who can join the After8 sessions? Is it open to everyone including non-Retreat participants?
The After8 session is an optional gaming session that is self-organized by our Retreat participants after dinner. It’ll be hosted at the same venue/hall as our Retreat sessions, and is open to Retreat participants only. Any non-Retreat participations wishing to join our After8 session would be required to pay the full Retreat fee.
14. Can I buy extra Retreat t-shirt for my friends or families?
We only print enough t-shirts for each Retreat attendees, and since it’s a commemorative item we do not offer extra t-shirt for sale. Why not invite your friends or families to join us too (if they love Euro Board Games like us)?
15. Alrite! Where do I sign up?
You can sign up by RSVPing as “Yes” at our Facebook event page. We’ll contact you with details for paying your deposit/fee. 🙂
Read what our past Retreat gamers have to say about this event
(note: the pictures are not directly related to the gamers providing the comments)
“The opportunity to try out many other games was good, however, I think, better was for the opportunity to meet other players, and enjoy playing with them while socializing! I think what really made the event fun, was the people. Everyone was out to have fun. And everyone was laughing, joking, enjoying the games very very much. It was really good.”
“Overall the retreat was great, I got great exposure to numerous games and got to know more people in the local boardgaming community.”
“Will bring more friends along hehe. At first few of my friends were interested but pulled out last minute because of financial issues. After Jacelyn and I came back from the Retreat and shared our stories, they all regretted not going! The post retreat 35% discount was really awesome by the way.”
“Another great thing from the retreat is that we get a shirt for attending the retreat that we wouldn’t otherwise =).”
“Throughout the whole 2 days, the adrenaline rush was crazy because there were so many new games to learn and I was hoping to win the prize =P. Before I knew it, the retreat was already over! It seemed so quick and I was sad that the trip was over but I had loads of fun just playing all the games that I played. I didn’t win most of the games but getting to play them was the best part of it all =D!”
“Well, i had an awesome experience! From the moment we got there before the organizers to having a little teaser round of Serendipity, meeting new people, teaching and playing games. Having a good laugh, not to mention prolly the worst shower experience ever. lol. It was sincerely awesome you guys.”
“we didn’t need to know how to play these games either. the peeps from BGC taught us, as well us some bg (boardgame) gurus. whoaa!!! 2 full days of gaming? awesomeness!”
“do we want to do this again? Is the Pope Catholic? OF COURSE we’ll do this again! with like minded geeks who wanna sabotage each other on the game board?definitely! hehehehe we all have that innate urge to outdo one another.”
“A great write-up on the whole event and great pictures taken! Some were really priceless, like Emils laugh, LChings stare, JCs funny faces lol etc XD!!! I can proudly claim to have participated in all the Board Gaming retreats so far since the 1st Euro Game Retreat back in 2006. I am glad that Boardgamecafe.net revived it again last year in 2010 @ Genting and is running it as an annual community event. I hope this event will continue to grow in the future and you can count on my support!
If you are reading this article and have yet to attend this event, make sure you mark your calendars next year when the date & location is announced! Pictures tell a thousand stories and I’m sure you can tell that all the attendees in this years event had a BLAST of a time there!!!”
If the FAQs did not answer your question, feel free to throw us your question(s) in the above event page. Or if you prefer to email us, send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
See you at our next Retreat!