Friday, May 9, 2014

Origins for Newbies - What to do

So you've gotten to Origins, now what? Here's a list of odds and ends of things to do (aside from scheduled gaming).

Vendor Room

The vendor room opens on Thursday and closes on Sunday. Make sure you give yourself time to go through the room, demo games, and see what is for sale. I recommend going through it at least twice - once to see everything, and a second time to see everything you missed the first time.

The vendor room also has a miniatures painting area, where you get to paint 1 miniature free with your badge. (IIRC, you can pay 1 or 2 generic tokens to paint another.)

Mayfair Demo Prizes
Mayfair Games demo area.

Mayfair Games is a major sponsor of Origins and has a huge exhibit area in the vendor room where they demo many of their games. For each game you demo, you'll get a ribbon that you can attach to your badge. Once you collect 5 ribbons (clay, sheep, wheat, wood, and ore), Mayfair will give you a small prize, an entry into their huge end-of-con raffle, and a 50% off coupon! After that, you can keep going to get more prizes and raffle entries.

Their raffle at the end of the con is huge and tends to draw a lot of people.

Play Something You Never Have

Origins is a unique opportunity to play a game you may not have the opportunity to otherwise. Take this opportunity, and get in a new game to try it out.

If you've never played an RPG, sign up for one. Do you only play Pathfinder? Sign up for a Call of Cthulhu game!

Never played in a miniatures game? There's a whole room for that!

Wander Around the Miniatures Room
A Stargate based minis game.

The miniatures room is downright amazing. The effort the gamers put into the sets is incredible and its worth spending 30 minutes walking around the room to check them out and take pictures. (Just be polite and turn off your flash if someone is playing a game.)


Yes, this has to be said. Gamer funk is, unfortunately, a real thing at cons.

Don't be that guy or girl who reeks. Yes, everyone has body odor, but not doing your part to prevent gamer funk is inexcusable. Take a shower every day and put on deodorant. Its probably not a bad idea to throw a travel deodorant in your backpack too. (I admit I do)

I often wonder why deodorant companies don't set up at Origins. They'd make a killing.

Also, teenage boys out there, dousing yourself with Axe is not a shower.

Are You A Werewolf?

Are You A Werewolf? is a staple game at Origins, with games being played almost 24 hours a day; it even has its own ribbon to play in all of them. Don't bother getting an event ticket for it either - just show up with a generic and within 10-15 minutes you'll be in a game. This is a must to try at Origins.

The Smithee Awards

Like b-movies? Then go to The Smithee Awards; an annual ceremony where the audience gets to vote for the worst movie for various off-the-wall categories. Very much worth dropping into!

Vote for the Origins Awards

Anyone who has a badge can vote for the games in the Origins Awards, an annual award that recognizes excellent games. Do you part and vote, and then complain Sunday morning when the games you didn't like get voted in!

BattleTech Pods
Battletech pods.

The BattleTech Pods are virtual-reality cockpits where you battle up to a dozen other players at the con in a robot-laden battlescape. Yes, it rocks.

The Art Room

The art room is where a number of artists showcase their work at Origins, and where you can buy pieces. Highly worth going in to look at the part and support the artists.


Origins has more to offer than what I can possibly put down here. I didn't even mention the auction, the movies, and all the other special events that are around.

With the exception of some LARPs, you can wander into any room to see what they are doing. Explore...see whats going on.

Have fun!

Finally, have fun and enjoy yourself...thats why you're there!

Did I miss anything? Shoot me a message or leave a comment.

Origins: What to Expect
Origins: Gaming
Origins: Where to stay, Where to eat
Origins: Kids
Origins: What to do 
Origins: Gaming Groups

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