a year from the drop-down list for a low-down on the history
of Avaloncon and WBC.
See the champions for each year. Or choose to view the Laurels or Medals totals.
Attendance grew again in 2010 despite record unemployment and
continued doom and gloom on the economic front plus a schedule
conflict with Gen Con. The record crowd was reflected in tournament
participation as well with 16 events drawing triple-digit participation.
Although the century mark busters actually declined by one from
2009, there were no less than six events hovering near that mark
with attendance in the 90's. The average attendance for the 152
events again rose 2.3 to 51.7, buoyed by 216 players for Liar's
Dice and 206 for Ticket to Ride.
Despite all that wood
gathering, Open Gaming did a banner business—filling the 13,000
sq ft showroom to overflowing - and keeping the ever-enlarging
BPA game library humming with happy borrowers. A constantly updated
schedule with a minute-by-minute countdown to the start of the
next event was projected on the stage to remind everyone of upcoming
event opportunities elsewhere in the hotel. The Showroom had become
the new focal point of the convention aided by a $13,000 BPA investment
in new tables and storage facilities to house the growing Game
library. So succesful was this transformation that the Showroom
will be pressed into service two days earlier in 2011 for a full
week of Open Gaming access as the Auction, still going strong,
moves to Lampeter Hall in 2011.
Bruce Beard retained his title as the longest continuous reigning
master at WBC by holding serve to win his sixth straight 18XX title, one of just 24 prior champions to successfully defend their
title, but 2010 will likely be remembered as the "Year of
the Family". In all, five different nuclear families combined
to win 20 championship plaques (not Junior wood). Congratulations
to the Beyma, Emery, Field, Henning and Reiff clans. The fair
sex continued to elbow their way past the gents to reach the winners
circle with eight ladies claiming titles in 2010. In all, players
from 43 states and three Canadian provinces plus 12 nations won
laurels in WBC tournaments this year.
At the other end of the title spectrum, 31 players won their
first WBC championship and 85 earned their first laurels. 16 won
multiple titles, led by Bruce Reiff who "homered" with
three shields in Football Strategy, March Madness and Union
Pacific while adding a fourth Trial title in his "lock"
event, Battleline, to continue his streak of winning wood
every year. He narrowly missed the never achieved WBC Grand Slam
of four Century events by finishing second in San Juan and
fourth in Auction and Battle Cry. It's not much
satisfaction, but it's all I've got. Sigh ... Continuing the baseball
analogy, this year looked like a Fenway slugfest with no less
than 11 doubles and four triples by the usual heavy hitters: Richard
Beyma (A&A, GBG, WAT), Alex Bove (AMR, GOA, RA), Arthur Field
(DOM, MFD, STP), and Stefan MeCay (960, POG, TWS) scored large
as the race for Caesar/Consul heated up.
The Team Tournament retrenched from its record year in 2009
with "only" 96 teams answering the bugle call in 2010,
down seven from the record 2009 field. The fifth-ranked "I
Beat Bill Crenshaw" squad squeaked out a 1-point victory
(no thanks to its namesake—apparently everyone beat Bill Crenshaw)
over The Defectors and perennial favorites Nest of Spies. That
suited Ben Knight just fine though as he won our Second Bracket
Busting contest and a free 2011 membership by correctly guessing
the top four teams and winning a tie-breaker based on selecting
the highest team outside the Top Ten.
In the continuing circle of life struggle of WBC winners and
losers, the events themselves again competed for the player lifeblood
needed for another year of WBC existence. This constant churn
yielded 11 new occupants of the Century club. Among events with
at least a three-year track record, 15 raised their attendance
bar by posting their own personal best entrant numbers for the
past ten years. The other end of that spectrum saw an equal number
of tournaments drop to new attendance lows for the past ten years.
Zenith: Those setting new highwater marks were: +29 Pirate's Cove; +23 Alhambra; +19 B-17; +12 Gangster; +12 A House Divided; +6 Command &
Colors Ancients; +4 Ivanhoe; +4 We the People (Washington's
War); +4 Liar's Dice; +3 March Madness; +3 Formula
Motor Racing; +1 Elchfest; +1 Britannia; +1 Ace of Aces.
Nadir: Those sinking to new lows were: -26 Saint
Petersburg; -10 Princes of Floence; -9 Memoir '44;
-9 1960; Making of the President; -8 Combat Commander; -8 Manifst Destiny; -6 Caylus; -6 Mystery of the Abbey; -4 Breakout: Normandy; -4 Race
For the Galaxy; -4 Yspahan; -3 Air Baron; -1 Amun Re; -1 Afrika Korps, -1 Rail Baron.