As I am mentally gearing up for Gen Con, it's time to start thinking about my other gear too. I finally giving up on my huge swiss gear bag that I have had for at least 8 years, it's awesome and was well worth the money, but I wan't something a little newer and smaller.
My Current bag.
What does everyone else use? Anything I should look at?
I use a Dragonscale Bag of Holding from thinkgeek.com with a foam pad for comfort. Personally I hate backpacks at cons. Especially cons as busy as Gen Con. I have been nailed in the face way too many times by someone turning around and not being aware of the space that their backpack takes up.
I'm using a rolling cart like a milk crate to hold my stuff, plus a backpack.
I use a regular ol' backpack like students use. I have tried the messenger bag style, but I have some back problems and it just didn't work out well. I will admit that backpacks can be a hazard to others, but in my view rolling carts are at least as bad in that respect.
I don't want to start and edition war on bag types, but back packs and messenger bags are my preferred method.
Does anyone have a suggestion for a slimmer style backpack, I just need to hold an ipad, dice, pencils and some food + water.
I go with a backpack if I absolutely have to, but if there's any way I can carry what I need in my pockets, I will.
That said, I'm not running any events; Can't see any way around needing a bag if you're carrying rule books & so on.
I use the regular, non-dragonscale Bag of Holding, although I have been wondering as of late if I can get away with using a smaller bag. I'll have to sort through my packing list again.
I also use it as my game night/lunchtime game bag. Right now, it's filled with this for lunchtime gaming:
I bought a modular backpack from the Equilibrium USG booth at last year's Gencon (www.equnit.com). Got it in Jan, absolutely love it. It's my daily bag, also toted it to the mountains of Honduras in February. Fantastic bag, worth every penny and the wait (they are so popular they're back ordered a few months).
Looks like they'll be at GenCon again this year, too. Can't recommend them enough.
I use the messenger bag that was a Kickstarter stretch goal from the D-Day Dice campaign.
I've been adding patches and pins I get over the past few years to it.
This one is mine, I use it everyday. It's just big enough for a small water in a side pocket, maps and tickets and pen to fit in the front pocket. In the main part of the bag I put snacks, tissues, camera (DSLR-only one lense, don't want any more weight) and it still has a bit of wiggle room for other nessesary items or small purchases.
It easly fits a tablet (not with my camera in it) and its held up really well.
Here's some linkage to the EQusg bags. Lots of options, from light and mobile to big and roomy.
This is similar to what I have, but the modular part means that it also comes with a light pack. The harness with the shoulder straps detaches and is its own bag.
I wear big backpack of doom no other way to do go without it.. I play true dungeon so i'm rarely in the hall to be begin with. Unless I want a tripping hazard of rolling luggage its a fact of con life for me and those around me. I use a columbia day hiker bag with the waist belt for added support.
I go with careful planning, cargo pants (wallet, phone, phone battery, water, water) and a blackrapid camera strap (big camera). Sometimes I have a lens pouch (70-200mm lens) on my belt. Oh, and my badgeholder (room key, spork, chopsticks, protein bar, pens).
If I have an event that requires a game book etc, I guess I'd resort to a bag, but I'm not at gencon for that kind of gaming experience. I might have folded up paper in a pocket, but if I play an RPG, I'm either a total noob at the system and a book won't help, or its a game I know well and I can check details on my phone or ask the GM.
The single most important bit of gencon gear is good shoes (clean socks (feet)). The amount of walking involved in a gencon for me makes this vital, and is why I am for a light load. I have gone so far as to buy new shoes at circle mall during the convention when the ones I was wearing were just not working out. If I were to carry a big backpack and lots of stuff, my back would cut my day short.
Right on about shoes, Plove. The customary wise old guy at my youth summer camp gave me some of the best advice ever. If you're one who gets tired and sore feet, change socks midday. You won't believe the difference it makes. Seriously.
For the Con, just pack an extra pair of socks and a good ziplock (for the first pair when they come off). Miracle.
Think Geek has their Bags of Holding 20% off this weekend.
I also use it when I DM D&D, and it holds everything I need (PHB, DMG, MM, campaign book). It's a great bag, zero complaints, perfect for gaming on the go.