Wat is het doel van een wargames show?

Peter Berry van Baccus vroeg het zichzelf af in een blog op zijn forum. Grappig om te lezen, omdat wat hij beschrijft – de nieuwe trend – precies is wat we in Nederland zijn gaan doen met Poldercon.

Berry beschrijft de standaard Britse conventie als een

“mixed economy of traders and local clubs putting on a range of games. They offer a chance for local gamers to visit traders from around the country and for them to show off their modelling and painting skills. For most mid-sized shows, this format is an established template and has been so for many, many years.

However tried and tested this format is, to my mind it has got stale.   There is no focus to the show, other than the existence of the show.   The ‘buzz’, the excitement, the inspiration seems lacking.   (…) there seems little attempt to rev things up.  

Any trader can tell you how this goes:  Doors open at 10.00 and sales come in till about 12.30.   At that point it goes quieter while people have liquid and solid intake, there are few sales as people do a final sweep and pick up last minute purchases and by 2.30 you may as well pack up. 

The show may be officially open until 4.00, but there is no one around until then. To my mind, that is really quite sad, although from a personal point of view it means I can get an early start for the homeward journey!

Hij vindt dat organisatoren misschien hun opzet moeten vernieuwen en neemt als voorbeeld Hammerhead:

This started out as a specialist fantasy and SF show, but was faltering badly in this guise. Paul and Sally at Kallistra, took the event on and completely transformed it, turning it into one of the premier showcases on the circuit. They aimed it at people wanting to actually play games, stated that all the games on show HAD to be participations, gave incentives to attendees to stay until the end of the event in the form of prizes, moved a superb new venue and made the whole package much more exciting and dynamic.

The end results? Big attendances, an oversubscription from traders wanting to attend and a massively enjoyable show with a great buzz.

(Hij is overigens enthousiast over de grote shows Salute en Crisis, zijn beschouwing is meer gericht op Britse conventies die niet zo groot zijn als deze twee).

Poldercon is zonder winstoogmerk en niet opgezet met een bepaalde marketingstrategie of zoiets. Maar inderdaad. Het gaat bij Poldercon om meedoen. Dat is belangrijker dan winnen ons doel, meer dan het bewonderen van schitterende tafels of het ophalen van bestellingen. Wees trendvolger! Bezoek Poldercon, het Hammerhead van de lage landen :-)!