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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Convention Recap- Sprout's Tale

As many of you know, this weekend I attended my first convention of any kind. T-MODE is a very small convention that focuses heavily on anime with a section devoted to Indie Games. It's size was actually a large part of what was so appealing. Being my first time at one of these, I needed something relatively small where any mistakes I made would go relatively unnoticed.

And boy did I make mistakes.

Turns out I did need business cards. And speakers. Yeah, turns out the monitor I brought didn't have speakers.

In any case, the venue was what I might call a wing of the lobby level of a hotel just outside of DC. High ceilings, white walls, and lots of little offshoot meeting rooms allowed for a very event-heavy convention. The main hallway leading into our game area was packed full of vendors, a large portion of whom were selling posters, paintings, shirts, and other custom anime-friendly merchandise.

There were a lot of costumes around. Most of which I didn't recognize. I saw a very convincing Jack Sparrow and had a lengthy discussion with a well-dressed Phoenix Wright about his previously-released XBLIG game, Super Santa Slayer. Besides those two, I'm not sure I could name anymore.

Day 2 went far better. I had a better idea of what to bring. A nice photo print of a Sprout image, some business cards, an easy to read sheet describing the controls of the game. Not to mention all our little pouches.

And if you're wondering, they were  a hit. Was also weirdly gratifying to see people walking around munching on sunflower seeds.

So, since I know this is always the most fun thing to learn about, here's all the wonderful things that went wrong!

On day 1, I showed up to find out they had stuck me at a table with no access to power! So there I sat, awkwardly twiddling my thumbs and examining the labels on the back of my equipment as I did my best to appear busy. That lasted just about one hour, at which point an extension cord was brought which allowed myself and the other guy there, of YYR Games (who is a totally awesome guy, by the way!) to daisy-chain some power together. And then all was well. Once he booted up his game- the weirdly addicting Bungee Ferret Tossing - I began to notice the deafening silence of poor old Sprout. I had forgotten my speakers!

In any case, I'd gotten my act together by the following day. And that was the day, armed with a set of business cards, I began to make proper headway in the "making connections" gig. That meant talking to a few of the higher-ups at the super-big MAGFest, and getting to know the incredible talent behind this picture:

There were lots of other connections, too, but I'm running out of steam here and I still have a lot of work to do tonight.

So in any case, if you haven't yet seen it, here's a video of the demo of Sprout's Tale we were showing over the weekend. See that stickiness? That's actually gone now. Woo!