TIME FOR GENCON TO START THINKING OF 5 DAYS OF GAMING?
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Posted by gib_rebeg

We have all seen pack events as well as strong showings for the whole convention question is is it time for gencon to start considering running a full five days Wednesday through Sunday instead of just the four days of Thursday through Sunday

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Posted by tdb

That has already been discussed here.

Also here.

And here.

 

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Posted by kaledor

A topic that comes up all the time!

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Posted by remnant

Until the next Gen Con experience there's always local cons hopefully in your area no?

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Posted by suburbaknght

I'll save you some time:

"Gen Con should be five days instead of four."

"Not all dealers can afford five days.

"It's okay not to have the dealer's hall full the entire time."

"Gen Con pays for the full dealer's hall regardless.  Enjoy paying more for your ticket."

"I don't want to pay for a full ticket if I can't go to the full convention."

"This was about dealers, not about you."

"Will people run events across all five days?"

"Yes!"

"No!"

"Does it make sense to go to five days when so many people leave early Sunday?"

"Wednesday's different!"

"No it's not."

"I don't mind taking off for work before the con, but I need to be back by Monday."

"It doesn't matter when I have to take off, I can't do any extra time off."

Gen Con: "Event dates are contractually set until 2020."

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Posted by rodoubleb

Nice summary.  

I'll add the obligatory "there are already all kinds of games going on Wednesday."

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Posted by rodoubleb

Hey suburba, can you do a 'Gencon should move to a new location' summary that we can quickly copy/paste  it into those inevitable discussions?

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Posted by braewe

OMG yes! Because that will come up RIGHT after the hotel lottery. Don't forget the 'longer dealer hall hours' too.

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Posted by sarena braewe

braewe wrote:
OMG yes! Because that will come up RIGHT after the hotel lottery. Don't forget the 'longer dealer hall hours' too.

I totally understand the WHY it can't be, but I sure would like some longer dealer hall hours.

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Posted by suburbaknght rodoubleb

rodoubleb wrote:
Hey suburba, can you do a 'Gencon should move to a new location' summary that we can quickly copy/paste  it into those inevitable discussions?

Actually I was inspired by wjpennington's summary on that exact same argument from a few months ago (link).  Here it is in all its glory:
Been watching this tired argument repeat for the better part of a decade. I'm going to sum it all up in advance to save time.

And here's how It goes: no one finds a better place...even by the standards of forum members who really have no idea what is really needed.

Places are suggested. Most shot down. Usually someone insists horrible location is the best...but tries to deny that their support is because it's where they live. Occasionally some grognard suggests Gencon move  back to its origins. Few people even bother responding to that idea each year despite how bad it is. Sympathy for the elderly restraining them possibly.

Sone one suggests Vegas. Usually a desperate virgin with fantasies of being a high roller who has never  been to Vegas. Those who have been to Vegas respond with the many reasons why it would be horrible for GenCon.

Once all the other bad ideas are shot down (New York, St Louis..oh heck all of the big bad cities ) the topic then spirals to all the things GenCon or Indy should do. Most are laughably beyond GenCon power. Many are out of touch with reality. Topic slowly dies out, with a few diehards insisting they know better, and GenCon could do better if they just cared...without having any actual knowledge of the area or professional experience in event coordination.

There. Saved you all the trouble. Entire tthread in one post,

You're welcome.

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Posted by gib_rebeg

I understand this has been argued before. Been well aware of the difficulties. But will wrap it up with a true saying.

If there is a will, there is a way.

If Gencon LLC was truly serious about interest in expanding the convention another day, I'm more then sure they could get it done. And I'm positive no one here could argue against that. And I'll give a brief rundown against the cons listed above.

"Not all dealers can afford five days."

True. But does Gencon exist for the Dealers, or the attendees? If its all for the Dealers, and that is where we insist on who we must accommodate, then our priorities are upside-down. Dealers are of course nice and we all love to see what they have to offer us. But they are there because the attendees show up, to sell to us.

"It's okay not to have the dealer's hall full the entire time."

This argument fails at its launch. Each year more dealers fight for ever so limited space. Should some dealers not show due to cost or difficulties of a 5 day convention, the argument being made is others wont fill that gap should a few choose not to attend?

"Gen Con pays for the full dealer's hall regardless.  Enjoy paying more for your ticket."

Ticket prices have been going up every year. And will likely continue until Gencon hits that balance point where attendees start dropping due to cost of showing. To take this another way. Gencon payed this last year for the use of ALL of Lucas Oil Stadium, but only used less then 20% of the building. Should we now stop using it because Gencon pays for the use of the whole building (They wont have sporting events there during our usage of it) and may charge more for using it? Even thou we don't use all of it.

"Will people run events across all five days?"

Simply put, yes. Look at the event finder. This year there were about 74 gaming events ran on Wed. And another 70 non gaming events were also put on as well. Only difference is they could not be listed in the event catalog due to the rules of the convention, or charge players for playing. Because the Con does not officially start till Thurs. Now some will say why not just let them run theirs on Wed, they don't have to charge so whats stopping them. Simple. If they can't be listed in the events book, many don't understand they are actually holding events, which hurts their attendance. You don't think many who show up on Wed, not having poured over the events webpage might not have been interested in trying one of the Wed events, but didn't because it wasn't listed in the Book and thus thought there were no Wed events they could play? Trust me, I DM a few events every year, and a few of them I have suffered the down side of not being in that book. And have seen my events go completely ignored even thou I flooded my groups FB page, as well as sent out dozens of Emails to all who follow our group. Only to be told "Thought there was nothing this year because I didn't see it in the Program book!".

"Does it make sense to go to five days when so many people leave early Sunday?"

I'll counter it simply with this. As someone who has DM'ed I know there are a fair number of people who don't show up until Friday when their work week is over. So should we then drop the convention down to 3 days because some don't show until Friday and not Thursday? People show and leave according to their personal life and when they can attend. And we already see plenty of people showing on Wed, so an argument against is already weak.

Gen Con: "Event dates are contractually set until 2020."

Contracts can be adjusted, and to think ICC will be unwilling to amend the contracts of 2018 or later to accommodate Gencon is silly. For them it means more money for the ICC. And with Gencon using the RFRA to help strengthen their contract negotiations, I'm more then sure the ICC will be willing to listen. And if the dates are hard set to the point they can't be adjusted. Nothing is stopping Gencon from changing the dates for 2021 and beyond to a 5 day convention.

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Posted by father bloodlust gib_rebeg

gib_rebeg wrote:"Not all dealers can afford five days."
True. But does Gencon exist for the Dealers, or the attendees? If its all for the Dealers, and that is where we insist on who we must accommodate, then our priorities are upside-down. Dealers are of course nice and we all love to see what they have to offer us. But they are there because the attendees show up, to sell to us.

It's not a binary system. GenCon exists for both - for the dealers to sell their wares and for the attendees to buy them. One cannot exist without the other - without dealers the attendees have nothing to buy, and without attendees the dealers have no market.

And keep in mind that not all vendors are big-time companies like Privateer Press. Some of them are relatively small operations that opt to have a storefront in the dealer's hall, and they (and all vendors, really) have real day-to-day lives and business operations to go back home to. Another day of GenCon would mean another day away from those operations, and some of them might not be able to afford that (to say nothing of the cost of another day in the dealer's hall).

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Posted by bigfathairyguy father bloodlust

father bloodlust wrote:
gib_rebeg wrote:"Not all dealers can afford five days."
True. But does Gencon exist for the Dealers, or the attendees? If its all for the Dealers, and that is where we insist on who we must accommodate, then our priorities are upside-down. Dealers are of course nice and we all love to see what they have to offer us. But they are there because the attendees show up, to sell to us.

It's not a binary system. GenCon exists for both - for the dealers to sell their wares and for the attendees to buy them. One cannot exist without the other - without dealers the attendees have nothing to buy, and without attendees the dealers have no market.And keep in mind that not all vendors are big-time companies like Privateer Press. Some of them are relatively small operations that opt to have a storefront in the dealer's hall, and they (and all vendors, really) have real day-to-day lives and business operations to go back home to. Another day of GenCon would mean another day away from those operations, and some of them might not be able to afford that (to say nothing of the cost of another day in the dealer's hall).
I would say if you had more days that you could potentially allow some of the small guys to rent booths for just a day or two to show what they have. It would make the event hall change daily, make it more affordable for the small guys, and actually give the person going exposure to more products.

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Posted by watchdog

I only have anecdotal evidence on this point, but I can't remember anyone reporting a conversation with an exhibit hall vendor that ended with "And they'd love for the hall to be open another 1-2 hours a day!"  Quite the opposite.  

And if the dealers aren't receptive to adding 4-8 total hours to the current timetable, I'm skeptical that it just takes enough "will" to get them to agree to a fifth day.

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Posted by gib_rebeg father bloodlust

father bloodlust wrote:
gib_rebeg wrote:"Not all dealers can afford five days."
True. But does Gencon exist for the Dealers, or the attendees? If its all for the Dealers, and that is where we insist on who we must accommodate, then our priorities are upside-down. Dealers are of course nice and we all love to see what they have to offer us. But they are there because the attendees show up, to sell to us.

It's not a binary system. GenCon exists for both - for the dealers to sell their wares and for the attendees to buy them. One cannot exist without the other - without dealers the attendees have nothing to buy, and without attendees the dealers have no market.And keep in mind that not all vendors are big-time companies like Privateer Press. Some of them are relatively small operations that opt to have a storefront in the dealer's hall, and they (and all vendors, really) have real day-to-day lives and business operations to go back home to. Another day of GenCon would mean another day away from those operations, and some of them might not be able to afford that (to say nothing of the cost of another day in the dealer's hall).
I am well aware many of them are small time operations, some of them are run by a single person who sits there from 10 AM till 6 PM because they are the only person they have. I do feel sorry for them. But as I stated, who has more clout when it comes to who Gencon should listen to.

The 500+ vendors?

or

The 60,819 attendees?

The answer is always the same. The attendees are the ones Gencon should be listening to first. And work with the vendors to help make their situation the best they can under the situation they are in.

If the attendees want Gencon to go to a 5 day convention, then they need to listen to the attendees.

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Posted by braewe

Wasn't there a survey done last year which included on whether additional days were in fact being 'demanded'? The one this year did ask on what day you arrived. It is possible that of the 60000 attendees, most do NOT want five days. I do, certainly. But I do not know if enough of those 60000 do to make it a worthwhile expansion for gen con. 

There would certainly have to be a substantial badge increase to pay for the convention center an additional day...would enough of those 60000 pay $120 prereg or $150 at the door so for a badge? Would the companies that sponsor gaming groups? How about the extra hotel day required for exhibitors, volunteers, and game masters? Yes, an individual who runs enough games gets their badge and hotel comped, but gaming COMPANIES do not. They must pay for all the hotels and badges.

Gen Con is already fairly expensive. Add in another day and I would imagine you'd start seeing event prices creep up to help cover the additional costs. If I were gen con I would do some real serious hard looks at the answers to these questions before doing more than they are currently doing--offering as many free wednesday events as possible for those who arrive early.

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Posted by parody

But as I stated, who has more clout when it comes to who Gencon should listen to.  The 500+ vendors? or The 60,819 attendees? The answer is always the same.

Yup: the exhibitors that pay Gen Con LLC more money* than the attendees do and are a major reason why some of those 60,000 people come to the convention.

The real answer is that Gen Con has to balance the desires of everyone involved and they have to know what those desires actually are.  The tiny subset of vocal folks on these and other online discussion areas aren't representative.

For what it's worth, I don't want five days.  Four is plenty, both in time spent on vacation and in money spent on the trip.

* Addendum: Throwing together a more detailed estimate of money going directly to GCLLC this is closer to even or slanted in favor of the attendees; the dealer's room space cost hasn't gone up as much as I initially thought.  Still, I hope you see my point.

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Posted by father bloodlust parody

parody wrote
For what it's worth, I don't want five days.  Four is plenty, both in time spent on vacation and in money spent on the trip.

Neither do I. As they say, "Always leave them wanting more." Better for GenCon to end after four days and leave people wishing for one more day than add another day that might leave people exhausted and thinking "By the God-Emperor, just END already!"

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Posted by njseahawksfan

I would count my vote firmly in the "four days and 10-6 is fine for the dealer hall" camp.

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Posted by klaron

Isn't it time Gen Con start thinking of expanding the convention to six days?

//ducks and run//

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