Galacti-Con 2013: The First Ever Galacti-Con   Leave a comment

Today was the first ever Galacti-Con.  I’d be willing to bet that name (or some variation on it depending on numbers of Cs and hyphen usage) has been used elsewhere, but today it was used for the first ever convention held by Galactic Greg’s in Valparaiso, Indiana.  Galactic Greg’s is a small, but popular, comic shop and gaming store, located a short walk from the Valparaiso University campus and on Lincolnway, easily one of the most traveled streets in the city (not counting the highways, of course.)  I’ve always enjoyed Greg’s since it has a good combination of customer service, reasonable supply and a good mix of mainstream and not-so-mainstream comics and games.

Having said that, I was a bit concerned about Galacti-Con when I heard about it.  I wasn’t sure what kind of crowd would be drawn to a gaming convention in Valparaiso.  As it turns out, though… Valpo can pack a lot of gamers into a decent space.  Not for the first time, it seems like Greg and Company have a good sense of what they can give to and get from the community.

One of my goals for the day was to try out the Pathfinder Society Organized Play.  I’d looked at it once or twice since I learned about it two or three years ago at Gen-Con, and this past Gen-Con I played a few of the goblin invasion mini-adventures that they ran.  I spent the last day or two making a character (Rogue, naturally, since Rogues are the best of all classes) that would familiarize myself with the rules.  I also wanted to play Munchkin, finally try Settlers Of Catan (I can’t believe it’s been this many years and I’ve still never played it) and to try out this Zombies game I’ve been hearing about, but unfortunately there weren’t many spots free for that.  So after Pathfinder, I had an hour or two late lunch with a friend before we jumped back into the second Pathfinder event of the day.  I’m proud to say that I’m two-thirds of the way to level 2 now.  Woo!  (Also, apparently Rogues in Pathfinder start getting Rogue Special Abilities about eight levels sooner than they did in 3.5, and some of those abilities include limited magic spells?  I’ve always said that Rogues don’t get magic because it’d make them too overpowered, and I guess that Pathfinder decided to call that bluff.)

One of the most fun elements of a convention is seeing the Cosplayers, and Galacti-Con didn’t disappoint.  In particular, one person dressed up as… I don’t think the character has a name, but the female Munchkin character as depicted in most Munchkin games, had a very nice costume that included an authentic Orc-B-Gone chainsaw and a Duck Of Doom.  I told her she should know better not to pick up a duck in a dungeon, but she pointed out that it was actually on her belt so that she wouldn’t have to pick it up.  Makes sense.  Also, the guy dressed as Slenderman?  Nice dedication.  The humidity wasn’t exactly oppressive, but it was definitely there and you stayed relatively committed to the morph suit, only taking the hood off occasionally to get a quick breather.

All in all, I’m glad to see a comic shop holding an event like this that goes over so well.  Nowadays, it’s hard to talk about comics and gaming without mentioning the difficulty that the local stores have with staying in the business.  But Greg’s seems to have it together at the moment, and they know how to share that fun with the community.  One of my gaming group’s frequent sarcastic complaints about Gen-Con is that we’re so busy with all the gaming that we don’t actually have time to game with each other (which is especially true for me since I tend to spend almost all of my Gen-Con time going to Writing Seminars.)

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