As one of the 2020 badge donators, I'm glad to see that we'll have first shot at buying our 2021 badge! Totally unrelated question: were there a lot of us? In a crisis, gamers tend to be a generous lot.
I ask this question with respect and with no intention of starting an argument with anyone: Will Gencon lay out the attendance requirements before we are offered the chance to purchase our 2021 badge? If we cannot meet an expectation (not lucky enough to get a vax yet) will we be allowed the chance to request refund? I saw that the VIG badges were offered out so I suspect normal badges may come relatively soon.
If I may ask one additional question to the Encyclopedia Britannica of questions already out there: if I'm offered the chance to purchase my badge, will I be allowed to purchase additional badges for my gaming group? We've attended Gencon together for ~12 years, if they can't come I'm not likely to make it.
I asked this last week and the answer I got surprised me. I was told that the convention is 5 and a half months away and they don't have any answers right now.
This surprised me as for a normal Gen Con at 5 1/2 months away we already know what is going on.
With this year having so many questions I would have thought that they would have had some of the answers to these questions when they announced they would have a physical convention this year.
Not to mention, attendees are just a piece of it. They need events/vendors also otherwise it is just a bunch of people milling around with badges. So, the larger vendors and event organizers might have their own set of criteria for what they need to happen before they will commit too.
Lots of moving parts that are changing rapidly.
I get that there are a lot of moving parts and that things can, and will, change rapidly.
However I feel they should have had more answers given that there are by far more questions with the physical event than at any point in recent history.
Look at it this way. They could have preliminary information out there that can be changed to reflect improvements from the amount of people getting vaccinated and such. Having a plan that we all know can be modified is far better than not having any ideas of what is going on.
My source is mostly speculation, but I am also working for FEMA at a mass vaccination center right now and I do have "hearing what more important people are talking about every day" to go by.
We are definitely going to hit "supply meeting demand" long before the convention happens (possibly as soon as May, definitely that soon in some places), and by September the only people who are unvaccinated will likely be people unwilling to get vaccinated. I honestly believe whatever limitations are implemented by that point are just going to be the "new normal," so if there is no Gen-Con 2021 there will likely be no Gen-Con 2022 either. Which is why I am assuming I will see everyone able to go in Indianapolis in September :)
Edit: Hah, I just Googled this after posting and I see there are already substantial areas where supply is exceeding demand. Well, that was fast. ...yeah, too fast. :(
GC can't give info that is ether sensitive or they just don't have.
Last I heard, and keep in mind I could be wrong on it. The ICC currently is at a capacity of 25% under current covid rules. For a good convention we need at-least 50%. By Sept we should be there. Hopefully higher.
What they are likely waiting on is hearing for sure we can hit that higher amount. Then will come distancing rules. What will they be? As well as working with county health officials on what they will want far as temp checks or any other demands.
Unfortunately this has put them, and all of us really far behind. Best thing we've gotten is the VIG badge selection went out.
But we are right now a good 4 months behind on event submission. 3 months behind registration. And right now we should be going bankrupt on buying event tickets and booking hotel rooms.
I fear with the delays we may be forced to do away with mailing our stuff out to us before the con as it will be a mad rush toward the end just to put on the convention. Which means will call for everyone.
I would imagine that they have a very strong plan right now for what they expect, but can’t move forward until they are clear that it is feasible. For example, they may be targeting a “50% GenCon”, but are not entirely sure that will be possible. The worst case is that they move forward under that plan and then realize they have to dial it back, which would be an epic mess. So they wait. I am sure they understand that this make planning/flights/etc hard, but it is better then having to unwind the registration process.
I bet when things happen, though, they will happen fast.
States and venues are testing them. Using one will allow venues to exceed 25% capacity which might not make Gencon profitable enough to hold otherwise.
I certainly want a passport system if I'm stuck waiting at will call because things cant be mailed.
if MSG can use one so can the ICC.
I think a lot of people's perspective is that Gen Con should put in the time to develop the answers. But, that isn't where the logjam is. They need to know what the public health situation is in the future, plus what requirements will be placed on them by local officials.
If we had more information sooner, people could plan better, yes. But, this problem isn't limited to Gen Con. It's everywhere. My kids' school (for next fall) will have started by then. They haven't announced fall plans yet either. And that has far more impact on me than a game convention.
I am simply stating that when Gen Con announced that they would have a physical convention they should have had the answers to some of the questions we would have at the very beginning. However they had none.
For many of us we want to see if we will fall within the attendance cap or have an idea if we will. Many of us will need to request that time off of work and make travel plans. If we won't fall within the attendance cap then there is no point in requesting that time off of work or to make any travel plans.
I fully understand how not normal this year is and will continue to be. Its because this is not a normal year that Gen Con should have answers for us and not maintain this radio silence.
We don't know how many of us rolled our badges over from 2020. My guess is that there is a higher number of rolled over badges than what the potential attendance cap could be if it is 50% capacity.
My opinion is that it is better to have an initial plan in place that can be modified as restrictions ease up than to have no plan in place, leave people wondering, and then make a bunch of announcements with less time to prepare.
It's a "Damned if they do, damned it they don't" situation. They announced the date as soon as it was finalised, knowing that they still had a lot of things to work out (and a huge amount of unknowns). Could they have kept the date secret until they had more info on badges? Yes, but then we'd all be wondering if it was still happening in August or not.
As a data point, Origins badges go on sale 6/26. Assuming Origins holds to that date, I'd expect Gen Con to get a timeline out by early June, as most people will have to choose one or the other with them both being in September this year.
You'd like more info. We get it. There's more chaos in the system now. For some people, this chaos might be the difference between going and not going. It is what it is. Life in a pandemic sucks. (But, frankly, I think for most of the people complaining, the delay in details isn't actually a deal-breaker -- they just want to know now. Who doesn't?) If they announced details early, as you suggest, and then had to change later (a virtual certainty), they'd get endless complaints about that ("I wouldn't have made my plans this way if I had known..." etc.).
Gen Con is not an outlier. Waiting until closer to the event is the standard in a pandemic because circumstances are changing.
I agree that Gencon needs more time to finalize things. But they should also be able to give us a current plan status....
i.e. if things dont change from our current state that we expect that the convention will proceed with capacity limits of 25% to 50% and with masks/distancing/etc.
This would at least inform those people who dont want to attend under those circumstances.
They must have alternating plans so they should be able to provide some roadmap even if things aren't finalized.
We do need some roadmap before June.
I'm just glad they are working to a real convention in Indianapolis.
I'm not sure I can make it this year, though, depending on what my school is doing. It will be tough. I probably won't know that until June or later anyway.
Which came first?? Who cares, just give me my chili cheese omelet and we're good to go! :) :)
Things are way too fluid right now in the public health sector. They will become a lot clearer over the course of next few weeks. For instance, the ICC website shows what the current protocols are for tables and/or booths in each of their exhibition spaces, complete with mapped out locations of tables and chairs, but it dated from February. I would expect that will change again at some point over the next 6 weeks. How many tables/booths permitted in the halls is a pretty important piece of information to have when planning Gen Con.
The State of Indiana updates the capacity of indoor gathering spaces *weekly*. Indianapolis could go from allowing 100% to 25% in the space of a week. I would expect that the pace of these updates will slow significantly over the next month or two. How many people are allowed in the ICC is a pretty important piece of information to have when planning Gen Con.