This will be the first time my husband and I are attending Gen Con (or any board game convention for that matter). We've been hosting board games for a couple years now and have always wanted to go to a Con but never found the chance. We're also coming from Toronto.
Just wondering if there is a huge difference in arriving Sunday vs Saturday? The Monday is Civic Holiday in Canada and we were planning on driving down so we were leaning towards the Sunday.
Thanks in advance for any feedback!
Sunday is a short day, as Gen Con ends at 4pm Sunday. The Exhibit Hall closes, and there are no scheduled events after then, although there are plenty of informal gaming groups going on Sunday evening.
Saturday is usually the busiest day of the Con, as many day-trippers and locals come for that day. Also, the big block party between the ICC and Lucas Oil Stadium is Saturday.
If you want to really experience Gen Con, I’d suggest coming Saturday & Sunday, but if you can only make one day, come Saturday. You have a full 8 hours to spend in the hall, and there are events running all day & night.
I completely agree on choosing Saturday over Sunday if you can only make one day. On Sunday the convention is starting to wind down and you will find significantly fewer events and activity.
Sunday is the afterglow. Many people, myself included, don't do much (If anything) on Sunday. You will not get a good feel for what Gen Con is all about on Sunday
Have decent breakfast
Work dealers hall until it closes, but after 2pm it dies down a lot.
Help disassemble the booth and pack it up
See if anyone wants to head for dinner
Go for dinner
check into Sunday night hotel and chill. Debate whether to go do something.
Pack for Monday flight
This is very different than Thurs-Sat. which is Wake up... RUN!!!!!!.... Crash out and sleep.
In past years people have come to these forums and complained, feeling ripped off for their experience of attending on Sunday only.
As others have said:
Sunday is a 1/2 day of the con. There are much fewer events. Events tend to get cancelled on Sunday (especially morning events) due to no shows of players and DMs alike moreso than on other days (still a rare occurrence).
Given your substantial time investment to get there, I'd definitely shoot for Saturday.
Be sure to view the event catalogs when they are released, pick some events you think will be fun and put them in your wishlist, and be online at the exact minute registration opens to have a shot at getting them.
There will be many events, and openings, after the initial registration - but many events are in short supply and are snapped up within minutes of registration going live.
You can easily spend a day wandering the exhibit hall and play-testing games, but Saturday is the busiest day for this.
Saturday also has the costume contest and parade.
Have fun - welcome to Gen Con!
If you can only come for one day only, I would recommend Friday or Saturday. I generally find Friday to be the easiest day to roam the dealer hall and there are tons of events. Like others have said, I would strongly discourage you from making Sunday your only day as things are winding down significantly.
Although, if you do come on Sunday you won't feel as bad that you didn't come for all 4 days :)
I get a little depressed on Saturday morning just because of the realization that I only have about 20 hours of GenCon left...
I highly suggest Saturday if you do one day.
Thanks all. Just wanted to update that we've decided to come Sat and Sun. Super Excited!
Just a word of warning: I used to "just do Saturday" at Origins.
Then I did "just the weekend".
Then it was "just Origins".
Then it was "just volunteer at Origins and go to Gen Con".
Last year it was "just Trade Day through Sunday at Gen Con".
This year is "just four sessions in the Playtest Hall, help run the Math Trade and introduce a friend to Gen Con".
Oh, and "maybe just Saturday at Origins this year".
Haha. I went all four days my first Gen-Con, but that sounds almost exactly like my progression at the Auction.
I heard there was an Auction and asked around until I found out where it was, but forgot to check it out.
Next year I finally checked it out, but walked in just as they were selling multiple 1950s-era copies of the horse-racing board game "Steeplechase" and thought that was indicative of the whole thing and left.
Next year I had a half hour of downtime before an event and was walking past it anyway and decided to check it out, and entered just as an ex-TSR employee was explaining the history of some rare older D&D module and was fascinated.
Next year my friends started making fun of me for spending so much time at the Auction.
Next year my friends stopped making fun of me for spending so much time at the Auction because it became clear that was my primary interest.
Next year I spent so much time at the Auction that I started volunteering and thus spent even more time at the Auction.
Now I am an auction.