Thanks for choosing to vacation with us in our first year in Seven Springs—an exciting move up in creature comforts and amenities. Here are some helpful hints and late breaking news to guide you through the coming week. To those who have heard this all before, please bear with me as much of what follows is new and pertains to our new venue. But first, refresh the cache in your browser to get the latest updates on our website.
TEAM TOURNAMENT: And they're off! The odds are posted for the 26th run for the slivers. See the Team List to check the hilarious assemblage of 68 team logos and accompanying commentary by Stuart "Happy Handicapper" Tucker for the tote board of the Highland Handicap. All wagers are purely hypothetical of course but it will help you with ...
BRACKET BUSTIN' WBC STYLE:Got March Madness withdrawal? Make your brackets for the WBC Team Tournament. Send your Top Ten picks for the Team Tournament (by Team Name—not number) listed in order from 1st to 10th to
firstname.lastname@example.org by July 22 for a chance to win a free Sustaining admission to WBC 2017. One entry per person. And if you are one of our 272 jockeys, post your score on the self-service Team Tournament Scoring display in the Exhibit Hall.
BADGE HOLDERS: You need not worry about leaving your “official” WBC pouch badge holder at home. We’ve bagged the treehugger and the US balance of payments concerns and said whatta heck—one less rule. You can use the badge holder appliance of your choice as long as you wear one. If you need one, we have four styles available ranging in price from the free pin style to a new and improved $2 pouch version and the fancy fabric-saving magnetic variety. Be forewarned, however, that the magnetic version does not fare well with backpack, seat belts, hotel keys, credit cards, and pacemaker interactions. There will be a $5 charge for lost and replaced badges.
NEW: SIGNATURE GUARANTEE: You must sign for receipt of your badge and all the goodies that come with it. So make sure you have everything before you walk away. Once you sign, there is no coming back for what you forgot. Every one must pick up and sign for their own badge. No exceptions!
PROGRAM: The 2016 printed program available at registration is black & white only. Those who prefer a full color presentation or who cannot wait to get their hands on a printout may download it now in full color from the Schedule page. The programs provided at WBC are strictly one per person and invariably get lost so having a spare or one of the schedule apps is highly recommended. In fact, if you come so equipped, forego the B&W version entirely so we’ll have something to hand out to any late arrivals.
NEW: 2017 RESERVATION POLICY:
Do not try to make a 2017 reservation. Seven Springs will not accept hotel reservations before January 15, 2017. At that time, reservations will again be limited to those reserving stays of five days or more with shorter duration stays opening later on a space available basis. A non-refundable deposit of 50% of the total lodging cost per room (or 25% per condo) will be required. Reservations cancelled 60 days or more in advance of arrival date will forfeit one night of the advance deposit amount. Reservations cancelled within 60 days of arrival date will forfeit the entire deposit. Reservations cannot be transferred to another party. Any cancelled room will be returned to availability and subject to claim by the next party on the waiting list. This policy change is to prevent early sellouts by those reserving rooms on speculation. For years we’ve been plagued by early sellouts only to have speculative reservations cancelled when its too late to fill those rooms by folks who have made other plans in the interim. Consequently, we’ve decided to finally put some teeth in the policy in an attempt to keep rooms available until people are sure they will use them.
You CAN make reservations before 2017 if you reserve a multi-bedroom condominium, chalet or cabin. We urge you to attend one of the three Condo seminars scheduled during the week by the Seven Springs Sales Office to see what is available and check out all the extras involved in a condo stay. Not only will you enjoy full kitchens and living areas, but you will make WBC more accessible to other gamers by opening more hotel rooms and that is good news for everyone since nothing is more essential at a gaming convention than fellow gamers.
NEW: Parking & Checkin:
Seven Springs is blessed with ample free parking, but exercising considerate behavior in its use will make this facility better for all concerned, so:
- If staying in the Hotel, unload your bags by the main entrance on Main St and follow the road ahead and back to park in the Lower Lot on Tennis Court Road in front of the hotel tower.
- If staying in the condos or a chalet, stop just long enough to get your keys and directions to your condo/chalet from the front desk in the hotel lobby. Parking is available in front of your condo/chalet. Park in front of the chalets, only if staying in a chalet.
- Those bringing many games would be well advised, AFTER checking in, to proceed to the right of the hotel on Ski View Ave and park in the upper lot, using your car for a games cache close to the meeting rooms of the Convention Center. Note that most wargames will not be located in this area so those toting mostly wargames are better off in the lower lot.
- Entrance to the Convention Center and Main Lodge for those staying in the hotel is best accomplished from inside the hotel directly from the third and fourth floors. Those staying elsewhere should park in the Upper Lot and enter the Convention Center directly from the lot.
NEW: FOOD SERVICE: Contrary to the service hours posted on the inside cover of the Program, Slopeside restaurant WILL open for breakfast daily at 7 AM during our stay. The menu for First Tracks Food Court in the Ski Lodge has been posted: • Tenders/Fries $4.95 • Chicken $5.95 • Combo $8.95 • Mashed Potato Meltdown $9.95 • Boarder Burgers $4.95 (3) $9.95 • Hot Dog/Chili Dog $7 • Chili & Cheese $8.50 • Pizza $5.95 • Chicken Noodle Soup $5.95 • Chili $6.95 • Ribs (Half) $7.95 (full) $12.95 • Italian Hoagie $6.95 • Turkey Wrap $6.95 • Salad $5.95. Other meal options are as listed on the inside cover of the program.
LATE SCHEDULE CHANGES:
QUARTERMASTER GENERAL: This preview replaces the second iteration of Destination Neptune Thursday @ 9 AM; Table 7 in the Exhibit Annex.
VICTORY OR DEATH: The Peloponnesian War: This preview replaces the third iteration of Destination Neptune Thursday @ 12 PM; Table 7 in the Exhibit Annex..
MYTHKRIEG PREVIEW: All 14 previously scheduled offerings have been cancelled.
HOW THE WEST WAS WON: Ben Knight’s Western quasi Euro-CDW has been added Thursday at 3 PM; Table 1 in the Exhibit Annex.
ILLUSIONS OF GLORY: Perry Silverman's Preview has four 4-hour sessions scheduled Thursday @ 1 PM, Friday @ 10 AM, and Saturday @ 10 AM & 8 PM at Table 9 in the Exhibit Annex.
GLOBAL WAR ARMY PLANNINGl 1939-40: This seminar by Peter Martinson, who is assigned to the Joint Operational War Plans Division of the Joint Staff, is an overview of the US Army’s contingency planning.
WBC AUCTION: Sitting in on the game auction is always a nostalgic way to spend the day. It begins at 10 AM Tuesday and will conclude prior to the regular tournament fare at 6 PM, thus allowing us to keep our competitive focus. Check out the newly updated list of over 600 lots being auctioned on the Auction page. Print the list to help you track the bidding. And remember, the Auction Store opens at 9; an hour before the Auction begins.
AUCTION STORE: Pre-registration for the Auction Store has ended. Do not bring unregistered items for sale. They will not be accepted at the Auction or the Store. Auction and Auction Store sales are strictly cash-only affairs so bring your wallet. While there are ATMs on site, they can be emptied during sold out conventions so we suggest bringing the cash you'll need. WBC still does NOT take credit cards.
Registered lots for the Auction Store must be checked in at the Grand Ballroom on Monday between 2 and 10 PM.
KIOSKS: Check the Kiosks display in the 4th level hallway between the Main Lodge & the Convention Center opposite Pizza Place. It is an impressive display if I say so myself. Each is adorned with a pictorial history of the event that furthers the traditions of WBC. Do NOT sign the entrant lists on the Kiosks - those are strictly for the use of GMs. There is no event pre-registration at WBC. Later, when you want to see if you've done well enough to advance to a subsequent round after a preliminary heat, check out the Alternate & Qualifying lists on these kiosks which should be returned to this hallway in alphabetical order when not in use. Do NOT write on these kiosks! By vandalizing them with your messages you make it that much harder for us to keep prices low and appearances up. Use the paper that is taped to them, not the boards themselves.
The Event pictorial history sheet on each kiosk contains a place above the previous Laurelists for the GM to provide a Cell Phone # should you need to contact the GM. This is voluntary and up to each GM as to whether they wish to provide it or not - but there is a uniform place to look for this information. Give your GM a break and do not abuse their sacrifice of personal time by making unnecessary calls.
PERSONAL SCHEDULER & APPS REVISED: View the details of your favorites and then plan your schedule using Steve Okonski's Personal Scheduler. Check the Schedule page for all of the updated scheduling tools, including the iPad and android apps and a new Kindle version.
PICTURES: Newcomers will have their photos taken, so comb your hair, ladies. We use these photos on our website, event kiosks, and Yearbook to honor winners and laurelists in the various events as well as on membership badges. You may protest you'll never win anything, but please humor us and oblige us with a photo. You can request that we not use the photo on the internet. Gents, we'd appreciate it if you'd remove the hats and sunglasses, so that many years from now when we remember ol' Buckwheat, we can recall what you actually looked like. We'll also stop asking you for a new photo if you give us one where we can actually see your eyes. The kids photos get retaken frequently since they are anxious to grow up. Adults, not so much, since most of us would rather remember what we used to look like. However, if you think you've grown more lovely or handsome as the case may be with the advancing years, feel free to ask for a newer photo.
PACE YOURSELF: WBC is now nine days long. As such, it is very much a marathon—not a sprint. Resist the urge to treat it as a theme park and run from one event to the next. You'll enjoy yourself more if you take the time to eat and sleep normally and take an occasional break.
TOURNAMENTS: If with us for the first time, you may wonder what's the big deal? Well, WBC tournaments tend to be a far cry from what you find elsewhere masquerading as "events". Not all our tournaments are equal of course and GMs vary widely in experience and passion. You may be someone just looking for fun with pre-conceived notions of uber competitiveness who has always claimed that tournaments are not for you, but you'll be shortchanging yourself if you don't avail yourself of the opportunity to try a few. You might be surprised at just how much "fun" they are. Even confessed Open Gaming junkies admit that WBC's scheduled events provide the best organized Open Gaming ever - no more arguing about what to play next or endless teaching sessions. Just show up and play someone who actually knows how to play at the appointed time and place. What could be easier? So, keep an eye on that rotating projected schedule in the Exhibit Hall and pick a convenient time to get your feet wet. If you don't like it, you can always go back to Open Gaming—but at least you'll have tried.
WHY SO SERIOUS? On the other hand, WBC is not for everybody. Someone usually reaffirms that and does me the dubious honor of rubbing my nose in their blog discourse announcing what a miserable time they had. And of course they are right. Only you can be the judge of what is "fun" for you. Some folks are just intimidated by competition—just as liberals and conservatives will never see eye to eye as each spouts their own half-truth talking points while ignoring valid opposing points of view. Leaving aside for the moment how some people can enjoy a competitive atmosphere while others abhor it, I am always struck by the last straw indignity of these poor souls being shunned in Open Gaming! Now I can understand how the introverted can blame the ills of the world on competition, but try as I might, I fail to see any connection to Open Gaming and how those who populate WBC are any less friendly than one encounters in Open Gaming elsewhere. My experience has been quite the opposite.
However, in an attempt to make the world a better place, we have ice-breaker Open Gaming kiosks for loan in the Game Library. So, in addition to borrowing games to play, you can get a highly visible display that announces your invitation to join your table and thereby escape the pain of being turned away. The kiosks are color-coded like their larger, tournament brethren: red seeks experienced players; yellow will teach you to play; and green seeks someone to teach them or are willing to learn together. Once your table is filled with all the players you need, please return the kiosk for others to use in finding partners.
UNABLE TO ATTEND? We'll miss you, but if you have a friend who is going, ask them to pick up any souvenirs for you and send us an email at email@example.com to confirm who your representative is.
REGISTRATION DESK: Convention registration is in Stag Pass next to the Grand Ballroom and Exhibit Hall (Open Gaming). The desk will be open from 8 AM to 9 PM daily save for meal breaks until closing on Sunday at approximately 2 PM. Be sure to stop by before departing to pick up any prizes won. Whether pre-registered or not - report to Stag Pass to pick up your badge and program. And again, we do not take credit cards - so bring your checkbook if contemplating a purchase by other than cash.
MAILING LIST: At registration, walk-ins will be required to complete an address form for both postal and email addresses so that we can contact you in the future. Rest assured that BPA does not sell or share its Membership List. If pre-registered, and you have changed either postal or email addresses recently, please share that information with us by neatly printing a Change of Address Registration form. However, to actually get our free Monthly newsletter emailed to you, visit: http://lists.boardgamers.org/mailman/options/bpamail/cd%40boardgamers.org
O, Canada! & Overseas Members: To avoid currency exchange problems, many of our members outside the US pre-pay their next year membership fees. We now accept Paypal payments throughout the year so this is less of a problem. However, those reluctant to deal with Paypal may complete a Registration form in Stag Pass for a Sustaining or Tribune membership, and write "2017 pre-payment" at the top - indicating their preference for a free souvenir in the case of Tribune members. You will have the honor of becoming our first 2017 members. But first see Page 3 of this year’s program for 2017 Reservations policy. Don't forget to participate in the end-of-Year Trial votes by email anyway.
NEW VENDORS: Shoppers are reminded that our Vendors Room is only open Friday thru Sunday. We are pleased to have many of your favorite publishers back while welcoming Age of Glory Miniatures, Big Board Games, Dreamgames and Stratamax to their first WBC.
A FULL 9 DAYS:Sustaining level members now have nine days of WBC. Open Gaming has expanded in both duration, tables and space. You'll also find a number of new game demos scheduled in the Exhibit Annex Demo Area under the listing of "Previews" as WBC welcomes a crop of budding designers anxious to show their Kick Starter projects and new game designs.
OPEN GAMING: Open Gaming is limited to the Exhibit Hall and Exhibit Annex and requires a WBC badge which should be worn at all times. Games may be left setup overnight for continuation the next morning at the owner's risk. However, any game abandoned for more than an hour during prime game time runs the risk of being removed to Lost & Found. "Saving" of tables and solicitation is NOT ALLOWED. A Message Board will be available for those listing Open Gaming desires. Social media forums on BGG, Facebook and CSW linked from our homepage all offer timely opportunities to meet for a game. Using the preliminary round of WBC events as a form of scheduled Open Gaming is common practice. If you win and have no desire to continue in the event, just inform the GM.
GAME LIBRARY: Thanks to the generous support of Alliance Distributors, Rio Grande Games and other contributing publishers, the Exhibit Hall will have a supply of games for free use throughout the convention. Please borrow only one at a time and do not take them from the Exhibit Hall. Return them to the same alphabetical section of the library in the same condition you received them, and remember to sign them both in and out on the same line using the same alphabetical-coded clipboard for the game you borrowed. Use the bags provided to sort and store pieces for the next user. Your co-operation is needed so we can continue to offer this valuable resource. The current library inventory is listed online.
JUNIORS: The Juniors program has moved to Fox Den on Level 2 of the Convention Center and is now open six days. Before you unleash the kids, be advised that those 12 and under who wish to play in the Juniors events or use the Juniors room must be accompanied by a member parent or guardian to sign a consent form before being allowed to use the room. Be advised that the Juniors Room is NOT a Day Care service, however, and that we take no responsibility for keeping tabs on children who are free to come and go as they please. There is no substitute for parental supervision. We welcome all parental assistance in teaching games and keeping order. Inquire with the hotel for day care and kids camp services.
EXHIBITS: These are not to be confused with Vendors & Sales, but are tables reserved for publishers to demonstrate their products, both old and new, and distribute their literature. They may playtest upcoming games or just invite you to Open Game with their products. These tables will be marked as reserved for the various companies and cannot be used for Open Gaming or events without the permission of that exhibitor. Exhibit tables occupy the First Tracks section of the Ski Lodge and the first row of the Exhibit Hall.
FOREIGN CURRENCY: Exchange of foreign currency is not available locally. Be sure to visit the Foreign Exchange Office at your airport. While the hotel accepts major credit cards, BPA does not, so convention registration and auction purchases must be paid for in US currency. There is a $25 charge for any returned check.
WEATHER: This being our first trip to Seven Springs in the middle of a heat wave, we’re not quite sure what to expect other than the mountain resort promises to be cooler and less humid than where most of you are coming from. Dress accordingly and don't forget your swimsuit for a refreshing dip in the pool or jacuzzi. But even during the current heat wave, pack a sweater and pants to deal with the possibility of air conditioning running amok - an all too recent experience elsewhere.
REGISTERED? NEED A RIDE/ROOMMATE? OPEN GAMING PARTNER? SPOUSAL DIVERSIONS: Pre-Registration is long since closed, but we welcome guests at the door. Check out the confirmation list at http://www.boardgamers.org/wbc16/prereg.htm#confirmation.
SHOW YOUR COLORS: Saturday, July 30th is the official Game Club T-Shirt Day. Promote your local gaming group and camaraderie by showing everyone your gaming affiliation. Friday, the 29th, is Team Shirt day. Show the creativity of those clever team logos. Thursday is Centurion Shirt day when past winners can strut their stuff in unison. And for the elite veterans amongst us, Wednesday is Legion Day when those proud few stalwarts laying claim to having attended every WBC can proudly proclaim their veteran status by wearing their Legion shirts. But Monday is a day when we can all show our local pride by wearing our favorite Sports Jersey. Promote your sports affiliations when we meet at WBC! Empty your closets and pack accordingly.
- The BPA's Annual Meeting will be held before the Collectibles auction on Tuesday, July 26th at 3 PM in the grand Ballroom of Seven Springs Mountain Resort where we will present the newly elected 2016 version of the Board of Directors for your questions.
- 8 AM on Sunday morning, July 31st will find us in the Sunburst Forum as the site of our Annual Armistice Meeting with the presentation of Awards and comments from the members regarding our first foray to Seven Springs. All are encouraged to attend.
POSTERS NA: Attendees are reminded that absolutely NO flyers, posters, or charts of any kind are to be taped, glued, stapled, or adhered in any fashion to any surface at Seven Springs. Any such materials will be immediately removed. You are welcome to hand out flyers for gaming activities but absolutely no signage of any kind is to be adhered to a wall, furniture or other surface. Those who ignore this rule will be liable for damage claims.
FLEA MARKETS NA: Attendees are reminded that all tables at WBC are reserved for the PLAY of games by those with a current WBC badge. No unauthorized selling, trading, or solicitation is allowed on the premises. Items stacked on tables and games left unattended will be sent to Lost & Found in Registration.
WEAPONS & UNIFORMS NA: Weapons and items that appear to be weapons are not allowed at WBC. For more details, see http://www.boardgamers.org/policies01.htm.
SMOKING NA: There is no smoking in public areas throughout WBC. If you need to smoke, please step outside. Do NOT open windows. Attendees are reminded NOT to bring outside food and drink into the meeting rooms. Seven Springs does not allow it.
DRINK RESPONSIBLY: While we do not wish to restrict any one's civil liberties, we must protect the majority (especially the children present) from the irresponsible behavior of a few who imbibe too much. Please restrict your social drinking to acceptable levels, and if you have had problems of this sort in the past, we urge you to abstain altogether. Please report any unacceptable behavior to the front desk. Unruly attendees will be removed and banned from future attendance.
PRIZES: Players are reminded to check the event kiosks in the Kiosk hallway of the Convention Center to see advancement priority for later rounds. It is not uncommon in multiplayer games for non-winners to advance, so if you want to play, always check to see if there are openings in the later rounds. It is not the GM's responsibility to find you. You must check the kiosk to determine your standing or appear at the next round to check for vacancies. If you do win a prize, remember to collect it at Stag Pass before leaving. Although we hold prizes for pickup next year, we must charge a shipping and handling fee if you want them delivered in the interim. Also, remember to check the back of any Plaques you win in GMT events for merchandise credits.
EXPERIENCE LEVELS: Please honor the experience requirements of events. Class A (red) events are for experienced players only. Class B (yellow) events allow beginners only if you have at least read the rules or attended the mandatory demonstration in the Exhibit Hall Annex. Do NOT expect to be taught the game during the event. Class C (green) events have GMs who have agreed to coach players during play.
PLAYING TIMES: Be considerate and play promptly, keeping within the duration of the event's listed playing time. Failure to do so not only causes problems when the space you occupy is needed for another event, it can distress your opponents by making them miss the start of their next event. And it slows down the entire tournament while others wait for you to finish before they can start another round. Failure to adhere to the scheduled playing times forces GMs to make adjudications which neither they nor you will enjoy - especially since we advise heavy bias against those who play slowly. Most event playing times are already estimated on the long side but if you cannot keep up with even that pace, restrict your play to Open Gaming.
BEHAVIOR: Treating others with the same respect you would like to receive in return is the golden rule. Most at WBC are well behaved. We'd like your help in weeding out the occasional bad apple. If you encounter someone having a bad day, don't suffer in silence. Report it to your GM promptly so that the problem can be addressed. And if you are one of those people who demands absolute silence while taking your turn or who has to blame others for their failures, don't bother coming. For more on this subject, see www.boardgamers.org/shark.htm. Gaming is about having fun and those around you are going to have theirs whether you are in a Final or not, so lighten up and go with the flow.
Despite our themed background of championships, laurels and wood, WBC is about having fun. No game is worth winning, if in the process you antagonize your opponent(s) and cannot walk away with the respect of those you've just played. PLEASE, if ever you find yourself about to chastise someone, I urge you to reconsider. Taking a loss out on someone with a verbal tongue lashing will not change the outcome, but it will brand you a "jerk". Dealing with subpar play in multiplayer games is part of the landscape you've chosen to cultivate. It comes with the territory. Live with it - don't ruin someone's day. Above all, WBC admires sportsmanship. Be someone we want to welcome back - not someone on our "banned" list.
And remember where you are. In my game room among friends, I've been known to trade expletives that would make a sailor blush, but in mixed company with kids around, we need to keep it clean.
If you are a late night Werewolf - please return the rooms to the same state you found them. Every year we consider banning late night play because of the mess they leave behind. If you like your all night gaming, don't abuse it. You'll have only yourselves to blame if the meeting rooms are locked at midnight next year.
GAMES: Lastly, remember to bring the games you want to play! Especially those of the two-player variety. Those using public transport must understandably pack lighter, but if you're driving, toss every game you want to play in the trunk. Every year people get turned away for lack of games.
......... See ya soon. Drive safely.
WBC Convention Director
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