I've got an idea for one of the adventures I'll be running at Gen Con, but it requires a power outlet for me to hook a printer (my own) up to.
Is there an extra cost to use a wall outlet during the convention?
There is a charge for booths in the exhibit hall to have power/network/etc. hookups, but in the gaming rooms? I've seen people plug things into the wall outlets with no issue; I've used the outlets to charge my devices. The only problem I see is your gaming table would need to be near a wall. Also, these were ad-hoc uses; they might have to approve/charge for hooking up a printer all day.
Since I have no idea how they plan to organize the rooms this year, you might want to email the events team to get a definitive answer.
Good idea. Think I'll do that. Thanks!
It would only be for an hour or so though, not an entire session.
Well, this option is painfully uncheap, but it exists:
Not sure that you wanna drop that coin on a portable power center just for one adventure, but it is an option. Although to be honest, a battery powered printer is much cheaper, so it's really hard to justify doing it the power center way.
Regardless, the point is that there are options available to bring power along if you can't rely on it at your destination.
Edited to add: Oh wait, there is a cheaper portable power thing available -
I was hoping I could just use one of those power banks people use to give their cellphones extra battery life, but as far as I can tell that won't work.
Just read the Event Host Policy; looks like it's basically luck of the draw if you don't want to pay extra.
I've been a Gen Con laptop GM for years and have found that sometimes even though you'd think there should be an available outlet near your table it ends up behind a garbage can, water cooler, used by another group, or behind some super heavy piece of furniture. I've also seen signs prohibiting extension cords at our local convention center. I did buy a portable power bank a few years ago similar to this one (I think mine has 388Wh):
When it showed up in my wife's Amazon cart I truthfully explained that I thought we should have a power backup in the event of an outage (there was a knowing smile by wife and kids when I packed it for Gen Con). I use it for powering a 19 inch monitor, and my 14 inch laptop. I've used it for two 4 hour games plus a one hour seminar in one day, in the monitor and laptop configuration, and it still had some power left over. Not having to worry about outlets and players tripping over power cords has been great. Also, you can decide where you want to sit at the table. I like having my back to the rest of the room as I can hear the players better which is usually opposite where the outlet is.
One of my biggest arguments year after year. People wanting to plug things in and having cords running all over the place. We don't allow it in the D&D space in the JW just for that reason. People tripping over cords, devices flying all over the place, clogged aisles. Nope not gonna happen. Our only exception is if somebody needs power for an ADA device (we used to have a blind DM who ran with a braille reader attached to his laptop - we always made sure he had a table by the wall so we could get him power - he was an awesome DM - we miss him).