RickFest 2013

RickFest 2013 was quite well-attended.

RickFest 2013 was quite well-attended.

This past Sunday was RickFest V ((Talking with Chris, we’ve arbitrarily decided that this was the fifth RickFest. It may be the fourth or the sixth, but we’ve officially set it at the fifth.)). For those who don’t know, RickFest is my annual day between Christmas and the New Year when I invite all my friends to come and play games with me. Over the years, the number of attendees has grown such that, this year, I needed a bigger space. So, I rented a local community centre for the day.

Sandy and Michael came by to help me haul everything over to the hall around 11:00, and we were pretty much set up by noon or shortly after.

First thing to set up, of course, is the table of games. There are a total of 31 games on the table. Some other folks brought a few games later on, and the game table expanded to two tables.

First thing to set up, of course, is the table of games. There are a total of 31 games on the table. Some other folks brought a few games later on, and the game table expanded to two tables.

 

Food table came next. As with the game table, it soon needed to expand to two tables.

Food table came next. As with the game table, it soon needed to expand to two tables.

And the kitchen full of chill, rolls, soft drinks, and such.

And the kitchen full of chill, rolls, soft drinks, and such.

 

Folks started showing up pretty soon after set-up. Michael and Sandy, of course, were there from the start, and Paul showed up soon after. Dan and Maddy showed up for a bit, then snuck out again, and came back after a while. Things were starting to roll by then.

Folks started showing up pretty soon after set-up. Michael and Sandy, of course, were there from the start, and Paul showed up soon after. Dan and Maddy showed up for a bit, then snuck out again, and came back after a while. Things were starting to roll by then.

The rules of RickFest are simple: come on by, play some games, eat some food, hang out with some friends. Come and go as you please. Previous RickFests usually had one main game going on the dining table, with possibly a second, smaller game going on the coffee table. This year, though, we had plenty of space, plenty of tables, plenty of games and plenty of folks, so there were often three or four games going on at once. It was almost like a mini-convention, which was fun.

King of Tokyo was the first game I tried at RickFest.

King of Tokyo was the first game I tried at RickFest.

It was also my first time playing King of Tokyo. I gotta say, the game turned out to be the belle of the ball at this year’s RickFest. I played six or seven games of it, including teaching it to a number of kids who attended. It was a huge hit with everyone who played.

The kids also played some Dixit, though I'm not sure they knew the rules. Or any rules. Still, they seemed to have fun.

The kids also played some Dixit, though I’m not sure they knew the rules. Or any rules. Still, they seemed to have fun.

The adults took their game of Dixit a little more seriously. Just a little more, though.

The adults took their game of Dixit a little more seriously. Just a little more, though.

Tsuro of the Seas is always a draw. I think it's the sea monsters.

Tsuro of the Seas is always a draw. I think it’s the sea monsters.

Dave and Kevin came by with the X-Wing set-up they use at conventions. It looked like a good game.

Dave and Kevin came by with the X-Wing set-up they use at conventions. It looked like a good game.

 

We got a chance to try out Eldritch Horror, too. It was van, but not a quick game. Eight players, all of us just learning the rules, made things drag a bit.

We got a chance to try out Eldritch Horror, too. It was van, but not a quick game. Eight players, all of us just learning the rules, made things drag a bit.

Forbidden Island

It was awesome to watch the players getting more and more tense as the water rose in this game of Forbidden Island.

Sentinels of the Multiverse

I don’t get a chance to play Sentinels of the Multiverse often, and I wasn’t able to get in on this session. Apparently, it went well. I need to take more opportunities to play this game, because I always enjoy it a lot.

We played a few other games that I didn’t document – Netrunner, The Resistance, and Werewolf. It was the first time I had played Werewolf, and I found that was a really interesting game. I inadvertently managed to kill off the bulk of the townsfolk myself, without being a werewolf, so I guess that’s some kind of accomplishment.

Things started to wind down around 11:00 pm, so we started packing up the games and cleaning up the hall. I gotta say, my friends were ((As expected.)) awesome helping me clean up and load my car. I had one little hiccup closing up, accidentally setting off the alarm, but I got that reset and made it home by 1:00 am.

It was a really full day – a really long day – but a really fun day. The new venue ((Wildwood Park Community Centre, for those who are interested. I know at least one person in attendance wanted the rental information, but I can’t remember who. Whoever it was, the link should help you out.)) worked wonderfully; it was big enough to hold everyone and run multiple games, while not being so big as to make the party with all your friends feel too big and impersonal.

Some lessons learned, though:

  • I made waaaaaay too much food. The party was a pot-luck event ((Previous RickFests, I provided all the food and beverages. This year, I went the pot-luck route to help defray the costs of renting the hall.)), but I learned hospitality from my mother, who always goes overboard. Too may leftovers, even after sending a lot of it home with the other attendees.
  • I also went overboard with the accoutrements of food: plates, cups, utensils, napkins, etc. At least those won’t go bad,
  • I managed to pack all my games to carry them to RickFest into two large packs. At the end of the evening, though, the games wouldn’t fit back into the bags ((Because volume is apparently variable in this reality. Normally, I’m really good at packing stuff into spaces that shouldn’t fit them – it comes from my time working at a bookstore, packing up returns.)). Now, part of it is that I was tired and rushing, but it would have been pretty easy to make up a packing list and order when I packed the bags to make it easy to repack at the end of the evening.

Overall, though, I think this was the best RickFest yet. I’m planning to rent the same community centre next year, because it was about perfect.

Thanks to all my friends for coming out, playing games, and making RickFest the success it was. Special thanks to the good, strong-backed folks who helped me tote stuff, set-up, and tear down.

Tune in next year for RickFest VI, the Eleventh Most Wonderful Time of the Year ((Actual wonderfulness may vary.)).

 

 

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2 Responses to RickFest 2013

  1. Milo says:

    It was awesome. So many people all together for the same purpose. Rick failed to mention how he took a lot of his time out to patiently instruct everyone, including the kids in attendance, on how to play many of the games. I knew the Rickfest would awesome, but you outdid yourself as always. Thank you for having us, we look forward to RickFest 2014.

  2. Rick Neal says:

    Thanks for the kind words. It was great to have you and Maddy come by and play games. And thanks for all the help loading my car at the end of the night! Hugely appreciated.

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