GenCon 2021
Post Action Report

Mischief of Faction

"Of course we sent the Fascist to the capital. She was the only one we could trust to vote in all of our interests."

Players consumed over 200 players hours of Mischief of Faction at GenCon 2021 - not including pick up games. By Saturday, some players had already developed variants of the game with their gaming groups.

Each session offered players two plays. The first game was offered up as a test round, while the second game was for "bragging rights." Most players took two turns to pick up on the multiple routes to victory dynamic that sets Mischief apart from other social deduction games.

Players seemed most amused by the Oligarch and Moderate roles, which are additions to the social deduction world. Fascists won more with their districts than with their faction, especially when their district intentionally voted an outed villian to the capitol.

Key Results:
✶ 9.0 Overall
✶ 9.3 Interaction
200+ player hours

Learn about Mischief of Faction on Kickstarter.

wrestLEgacy

"I'm really happy to see that all that training I poured into Admiral America paid off. Hey - when did he win the championship?"

wrestLEgacy attracted the largest cross-section of gamers, and was our sleeper hit. Most sessions broke up into two tables, simultaneously running different territories with unique organic story arcs.

The culmination of the final session involved players from different previous sessions. The climax occurred in a title unification match. Both champions were set to roll over a dozen dice, until someone knocked out the ref. Then the shenanigans began. Previous rivals dropped enough steel chair cards to reduce the match to only a few dice. One last second counterspell prevented the last steel chair from connecting - and the entire wrestLEgacy world roared as the hero overcame the odds to unify the belts.

Moments like the one above, the almost guaranteed in-game malarkey at the Ring Royalty Tournament, shocking loser leaves town matches, and recurring grudge matches captured the wild world of professional wrestling over the weekend.

Key Results:
✶ 9.4 Overall
✶ 9.7 Interaction
4 sessions - all one story arc

Global City

"Ambitious. I see what you mean. It does everything designers say you shouldn't do, but it somehow works.... Wait. You only had two referees for this?"

"I've been coming to GenCon for years. This is the single best experience that I have had."

Global City combined blended Oligopoly, Robes and Rivals, and Mischief of Faction into a single playing experience. Smaller player counts led to a skeleton staff for many cities, but that enabled several players to explore multiple parts of the game. The modular design remains rough around the edges, but the maiden voyage was successful along logistical and player fun fronts.

Similar to the Oligopoly run, de facto teams organically formed as cooperation among cities and corporations solidified into alliances. Although college-track players endured more upkeep than their Robes and Rivals peers, they took on the additional work of other parts of the game, with the majority of academics operating a corporation "in their free time."

Nearly all feedback involved suggestions to improve interaction, including enhancing the bonds between the Robes and Oligopoly experiences.

Key Results:
8.7 Overall
8.3 Interaction

Oligopoly

"They annexed San Francisco, New York City, and Moscow?! When did Mexico City annex Moscow?"

Oligopoly is essentially the operating system for the modular gaming system. Most players seemed intimidated by the large piles of bits and meeples, along with the wide array of options to help flesh out their cities' and corporations' tableaus. Players quickly grasped the low-freight design, and started to flesh out increasingly specialized tableaus. Within thirty minutes, the primary questions posed to referees were "Which phase are we in?" and "Did Mexico City really annex another city?"

A series of acquisitions brought several of the more aggressive players to the same table, in the same market (Mexico City). Instead of competing with each other in the big market, the group voluntarily formed a communal pool of resources. In a game built to be a reflection of global capitalism, socialism won the day.

One note: players pursuing an isolationist strategy reflected having as much fun as players in the Mexico City megapolis. The teams that formed organically remained semi-cooperative, but definitely showed preferences for businesses in their (newfound) hometowns.

Key Results:
✶ 10.0 Flow
8.8 Fun

Robes and Rivals

"Hey, what did you do with the bonehead? What? He won us a trophy? What was it in? Oh. Of course it was cornhole."

Robes and Rivals ran with a smaller player count than anticipated, but adjustments helped get everyone into the game. Combining multiple roles may have added to individuals' upkeep, but postgame discussion suggested that players enjoyed the two-player team as it provided a unique partner dynamic within the game.

Despite the several moving parts, players began to signal new rounds on their own - autonomously from referee input. This faster pace created a couple of unique challenges for referees to keep the story arc on track, but appeared to enhance player experience.

Notably, players with graduate school in their background raved about the game - especially about the theme. Concerns about the game being "too much inside baseball" were confirmed, but perhaps strengthened the game for several players.

One key lesson learned from the event: address challenging players sooner than later. Instead of intervening quickly, a player agitated a couple others which created a small bit of metagame turbulence. Once that was smoothed over for other parties, the game returned to its normal semi-cooperative state.

Key Results:
10.0 Overall
✶ 9.3 Interaction