MEPBMCon - Las Vegas, June 2019

[NOTE: This is a follow-up to my previous post entitled, “Middle-earth PBM Convention Survey Results”. As we now have a location and a date (range), I am posting this under a new title. This email was sent out to the members of the MEPBM Meetup online group, where we are coordinating the event. Please join the group if you are interested. Thank you.

Summary: We are organizing an in-person, MEPBM game, to take place in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, sometime in June 2019. If you are interested, please join us at the MEPBM Meetup online group.

Wait…what?! Ok, let me explain…

Yes, I just sent out the survey results where I recommended either Texas as a central event location or holding it alongside an existing gaming convention such as Origins (Columbus, OH), Gencon (Indianapolis, IN), or DragonCon (Atlanta, GA) next year, but after communicating with Clint about this today, there is a good plan forming now.

Clint is already planning to be in Las Vegas for another event sometime in the late May to late June 2019 timeframe. I’ll get exact dates as soon as he has them. Some of you may know that he was over in Las Vegas a few months ago, and a few MEPBM players made it there to meet with him on that trip.

By adding a couple of days on the front or the back of Clint’s existing trip to the USA, we’re going to be able to save at least $1,500, possibly more, on the event expenses to do this, as Clint is already purchasing airfare. That’s a sizable amount of money saved. Think about it this way - if 15 people attend, that’s $100 less per person.

Las Vegas also has the added benefit of being a direct flight from most major airports in the United States. I know this is not everyone’s favorite city. I’m a non-gambling, non-drinking guy, and I still find plenty of things to do in Las Vegas. That said, the focus is on playing MEPBM, so you could be anywhere. Although, some of you may want to add a few days to your trip while you’re there. I probably will.

We would still need to cover his extra hotel nights, food, and game fees for Clint to do this, but this makes the event considerably more affordable without the cost of airfare included. This is a 100% not-for-profit-for-anyone-but-Clint event. Meaning, all of us as players are just doing this for fun, no profit involved. Clint is still trying to to determine what the costs would be to host an in-person game, but he floated a reasonable few hundred dollars potentially, opposed to making each player pay for their own turn fees as a normal game.

If we end up with a team of 12 each playing two nations, that’s only about $20-$30 for the entire game per player (plus other costs for the event). Let’s don’t hold Clint to that estimate, as he needed to think about it further, but without airfare costs and with a flat-fee for an in-person game, we’re taking about a cost per player now down in the much more reasonable $50-100 per player range for the event, which is where most of you wanted this to be. This is just an estimate, and it may be higher than that, but my hope would be to keep it in that $50-100 per player range to make it as accessible as possible.

Perhaps a few players would be willing to chip in as “player sponsors” to help subsidize the cost for other attendees where it will make the difference between attending and not attending. Regardless, the most expensive part of this won’t be the registration fee, it will be the travel costs, which everyone would work out on their own. Note - I am still happy to help coordinate room sharing and ideally, get us a block of hotel rooms at one of the hotels there at a discount, wherever we can obtain some meeting space for the game.

The goal would be to get 25 (or 24 with pre-aligned neutrals) people to commit to attending and to run a full, 3rd Age 1650 variant, in-person game. We would rent some meeting rooms in a hotel in Las Vegas, and run the event over the course of two days, ideally a weekend, with a reception kicking off on Friday night, and two full days of gaming and other activities on Saturday and Sunday. if you can’t take any time off from work, you could fly in on Friday night, and fly out Sunday night.

If we can’t get the full 24/25 players to attend, we could conceivably still run this event with as little as four players, doing three nations each vs. a remote team. We would get Clint a hotel suite with an adjoining dining room or living room and could camp out with laptops. The only downside to a smaller attendee base is that this could make the registration costs for those players likely go up to $250 (or more) per person, but we could still make it happen.

My sense right now is that we’re going to end up with somewhere between 12-25 people, and we’ll be able to run the entire event with two teams in-person. The backup plan is a smaller in-person group in Las Vegas vs. a remote team, possibly in Europe, possibly a group gathering in-person in Texas. But wait, you Texas players, we want you IN Las Vegas, not in Texas. That’s a backup plan. I know there’s a lot of you in Texas, and Las Vegas is just a single flight away, and not a very long one, either.

So, that’s the latest on the plan. I know some of you are actually within driving distance of Las Vegas, so this will come as great news, whereas the folks on the East Coast are probably sighing a bit and reconsidering the viability of this plan. All I can tell you is that this is the best plan we have at the most affordable price, and it will be fun for all who can make it happen. It’s only a flight (or two) away.

Let me know what you think.

Thank you.

I have put up a survey to help pick a weekend in June 2019 for the event. Please fill in this quick survey if you are planning to attend. Thank you.

We have a date!

Based on the date survey I sent out a few weeks ago and confirming availability with Clint, we have confirmed that the in-person game in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, will take place on the last weekend of June – June 28-30, 2019, Friday night through Sunday afternoon.

Our current plan is to make Friday night an optional group reception, Clint presentation (if I can convince him!) and a team forming exercise. Friday night will be optional for those people who cannot fly in until after the work day on Friday (I suspect that a few of you will be arriving into Las Vegas in the late evening), and ending the game on early Sunday afternoon will give people the opportunity to get home before Monday’s work day. Some of you, I suspect, will tack on some vacation days in Las Vegas before and/or after the event, but others may be in a time crunch to get in and get out and I want to make sure we can accommodate everyone as best as we can. The goal would be to start Turn 1 on Saturday morning. More details TBD. There’s a lot of logistics details that will need to be worked out still.

Here’s the next step in the process…building out the cost model for the event.

Stay tuned as I get meeting room pricing quotes from venues in Las Vegas and we determine the final costs for the event (Clint’s hotel costs for three nights, MEPBM game fees, meeting space, and likely catered/delivered food to reduce off-site longer breaks during game time).

Please hold off on hotel and air reservations, not just because it’s more expensive to book this far in advance, but also because I may be able to get us a block room discount at the event hotel.

Stay tuned. Thank you for your interest in making this happen. This will be fun! : )

Oh yes, Vegas baby… :wink: