Yellowcon 2010 (Warhammer 40K Tournament)

Warhammer 40K Tournament (Yellowcon 2010)
Sunday, August 29, 2010 from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM (GMT)

Stormont Hotel
587 Upper Newtownards Road
BT4 3LP Belfast
United Kingdom


1750 point tournament. Prizes for winner & runner-up.

Access the rules pack which will be necessary for you to play in the tournament

The first game will start at 10.30, but it will be best for players to be there from 10am.

We hope everyone really enjoy the day!!

“Do people still go to cons?”

This year, Q-CON celebrates it’s 15th year.

It was sixteen years ago that I finished the ‘market research’ of conventions in Ireland (via Gaelcon and Warpcon – and getting illicit copies of their after-con reports from by Bothan spies). This was while I was the President of the RPG society, Dragonslayers.

It was a year later that I proposed the convention to the then-committee and we modify the constitution to create the “Convention Director” post and run a convention Q-CON 1 on a wing and a prayer. I organised the Megagame and ran games in 5 game slots that weekend. I got real tired.

For Q-CON 2 and 3, I took the mantle of Convention Director and in the face of promisers (who never deliver) and naysayers (who you should ignore) and no-confidence supporters (who stab you in the back) it was moderately successful. I burned through any good will I had built up and alienated people who didn’t even know me.

So why would I consider running a convention again?

Because someone asked me to?


Q-CON XIV video

The official video for Q-CON XIV was posted today:

It’s good to see it running as I did all the research for the first Q-CON by visiting cons around the country when I was President of ‘Slayers the year before. I amended the constitution, got it ratified and and then pushed the idea of running a convention to the folk. The following year we had Q-CON. Alan, who died last year, was President of the society and did a good job motivating the rest of us to work hard. I ran half a dozen games that weekend and had previously set up the Star Trek Megagame to be run down in the Mandela Hall. I was ‘Slayer’s first convention director and ran Q-CON 2 and 3 which both turned out to be really profitable in the end. Heh, who could have guessed. It wasn’t all easy and I hadn’t been aware until recently how close to the wire it had been.

Before his untimely death, Alan asked me to run it again…but commitments (like running a business, having my kids on the weekend) were too much to consider it. And, of course, I’d no goodwill left in the society and you NEED goodwill from the folk to get things done.

Diddlysquat is dead

Mark notes that Diddlysquat is dead.

I didn’t know much about it, to be honest but reading the testimony of specky I’m reminded of lots of the silliness that went on within Crucible Design.

In the end, projects like this are fuelled by a small core of people (usefully termed schemers and collaborators.). Everyone else is pretty much surplus to requirements but as these types of projects tend to be started by friends, people can be a little over-cautious about being honest here. Allowing a project to slide (or worse fail) because you didn’t want to hurt the feelings of someone who isn’t contributing seems silly on the face of it. But we all do it (at least those of us who are human have).

The most annoying thing, when a project is failing or when someone is being asked to leave a project, is the tendency for some to be passively obstructive (or even actively destructive). I’ve seen this in the RPG industry as well as in The Real World. Failing to fulfill promises again and again, blame-shifting, becoming upset when duties are removed and yet, when the deadline comes, their inactivity causes the deadline to slide. Problems like this plagued our fanzine WildTalents and seriously delayed the production of every single book we ever published. And when I stopped propping people up, when I stopped doing the extra work to make things happen and when I refused to give credit where it was not due, then Crucible Design stopped producing books.

Q-CON, another project I invested hugely in (I did the preliminary research, coving everything I could from WARPS, got the budget for Q-CON 1, got the people together, ran Q-CON 2 and 3) was always beset at the start of the year by people who had ideas but no intention of implementing anything or completing anything. It meant that with 2 weeks of preparation (after 6 months of failed investigation by two people), I was left alone to run the convention and pull together the Star Trek Megagame. I had to rely on real people with real commitment to fun to get it done (and a wave goes out to Colin and Lesley on this one). Sure, we pulled successful profitable conventions out of nowhere but it wasn’t without a committee that was so supportive that they had a vote of no-confidence in my ability to run the convention which failed:- probably more to do with the individuals not wanting to have to take over…

When relations break down within a project, it’s best for everyone and best for the project if you take the steps to cut out the chaff. I wish I’d done it with Crucible wayback when but even now I find it hard to do probably because I’m not the git everyone thinks I am.


Now, identifying the difference between chaff and rot is difficult and I dont think anyone gets it right. Chaff are just people who serve no useful purpose. They probably slow things up because in a democratic committee you have to ask everyone’s opinion. Chaff won’t kill you but they may bore you.

Rot are much worse – these guys are scheming against you and against the success of the project. These are the guys who will plot with junior members of the team and do their best to make sure their name is at the top of the list of every success and nowhere to be seen in the event of a failure. When you’re presenting your work, at a convention or whatever, they’re usually the first out with the pen when someone asks for a book signing.

In my experience, the speed at which someone gets a pen to sign a book at request is inversely proportional to their contribution to the book and you can be pretty sure that if someone has their pen out before you ask then they likely were responsible for delays in the product rather than actually being productive.

Thing is: if you’re a team leader then you already know who the chaff and the rot are. Be honest with yourself.

Conventions for the remainder of 2007

I missed Warpcon in Cork which annoyed me and I just realised that this weekend is Leprecon in Dublin. Would I go all the way to Killarney? That’s a long way. As is Galway. I’m not really into going across the water to England or Scotland at this point unless I can get a small group to go. As a result, realistically the next con I can go to is Q-CON in Belfast, a con I helped start 14 years ago. That’s kinda scary.

Dragonmeet would be nice….

  • K2 2007. Killarney Country Club, Killarney.
    Friday 2nd – Monday 5th March 2007.
  • Itzacon III. NUI Galway, Galway, Ireland.
    Friday 9th – Sunday 11th March 2007? Dates TBC.
  • Conpulsion 2006.Teviot Student Union, Edinburgh University, Scotland.
    Saturday 25th – Sunday 26th March 2007.
  • Student Nationals RPG Championships. Teviot Student Union, Edinburgh University, Scotland.
    Friday 30th March – Sunday 1st April 2007.
  • Sillicon 9. The HUB, Dublin City University, Ireland.
    Friday 30th March – Sunday 1st April 2007.
  • Battlemasters 2007. Digby Hall, Leicester University, UK.
    Friday 13th – Sunday 15th April 2007.
  • Salute Zero Six. ExCel, London, UK.
    Saturday 21st April 2007.
  • Beer & Pretzels XVIII. Town Hall, Burton-upon-Trent, UK.
    Saturday 12th – Sunday 13th May 2007? Dates TBC
  • Tentacles. Castle Stahleck, Bacharach, Germany.
    Friday 25th – Monday 28th May 2007.
  • UK GAME EXPO 2007. The Clarendon Suites, Stirling Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham, UK.
    Saturday 3rd – Sunday 4th June 2007.
  • Vaticon 2007. Student Centre, UCD Belfield, Dublin 4. Ireland.
    Saturday 9th – Sunday 10th June 2007.
  • Q-CON XIV, Queen’s University, Belfast
    Friday 22nd – 24th June 2007

  • Recombination, New Hall, Cambridge, UK
    Friday 10th – Sunday 12th August 2007.
  • Gen Con UK 2007. University of Reading, Berkshire. UK.
    Thursday 30th August – Sunday 2nd September 2007.
  • Furnace 2007. The Garrison Hotel, Sheffield. UK
    Saturday 20th – Sunday 21st October 2007.
  • Consequences 2007. Naish Holiday Village, Highcliffe, Christchurch, Dorset, UK.
    Friday 16th – Sunday 18th November 2007.
  • Dragonmeet 2007. Kensington Town Hall, London, UK.
    Saturday 1st December 2007.

  • Continuum 2008. Beaumont Hall, Leicester University. UK.
    Friday 1st – Monday 4th August 2008.

Games Shops in Paris

I went to two games shops in Paris and spent a little too much on books.

I got some English language RPGs and could hve bought more – there’s heaps of dead-tree books that I’ve never heard of and I know there must be hundreds of electronic versions that I’ve just not the time to look at.

I picked up some french language RPGs as well which has proved to be eminently readable.

The Authority RPG
Tekumel RPG (and I got namechecked in it!)
Hard][Nova RPG
Te Deum RPG (French language mediaeval religions wars)
Apocryph (French language religious wars in modern day)
In Nomine Satanis/Magna Veritas (cos the SJG one was “Lite” or PG13)

As it happens my friend Paul, who has a career interest in history, also ordered Te Deum this week. I have an inkling his French is better than mine 🙂

Sadly I missed Salon de Jeu, a big games convention which started on Friday and ended today. If I’d known it was on I’d have made the effort.

Reviews of these games to follow….