The last time I went to GenCon was in 2008, and it was a blast. I ended up bunking with Amber and Jason Scott, who are both the loveliest of people, and because it was my first time at the convention, I basically wandered around like an idiot and hit up as many interesting things as I could find. I did not, strangely enough, play any games. Well, that's not true, I played Katamari Damacy, which may be the worst thing a person going to GenCon should ever admit.
I did go to a lot of interesting seminars, though, and I think that's going to be my focus this time around, too. I can't really see myself joining any convention RPG tables; organizing short-term game events is sort of my job. Instead, I'm going to do a lot of seminars, learn as much as I can about as much as I can, and maybe invent a boffer sword with which to hit people in the store.
Both of my girlfriends are coming along this year, though. That sort of changes the game plan a bit, in that I'm not going to be quite as footloose and fancy-free as I was the last time around. I'm going to need to know where I am occasionally, and how to get to some places, and how to make my way from those places to where I'm supposed to be. That's going to take a bit more preparation than I'm used to. So there are a few things I'm going to need to figure out when I get to Indianapolis.
1) I'm buying a crappy cell-phone. A local one. I didn't have a way to get in touch with anyone last time around, and while that wasn't a huge problem, it will be this time. I'll be buying my crappy phone in Indianapolis at a 7/11. I will be leaving it there.
2) I'm going to sit down and actually map out some important shit in Indianapolis. Like where the cheap-ass restaurants are, the various halls, that sort of thing. They give you a map when you get into the con, and that map is pretty useful. I may end up scanning it, or getting a digital copy of it, and putting it onto my ipad.
3) Oh yeah, I'm bringing my ipad. There are few pieces of technology I love more than I love my ipad, and it is going to be something of a lifesaver next month. It's got an on-board scheduler. It's got a to-do list on it. It's got text-editing software so that I can take notes. It's got a doodling app so I that I can take notes FAST. And when I need REALLY fast notes, it's got an audio recorder. It's got maps on it. It's got an internet on it. It's like the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy lives in my satchel.
4) I'm planning ahead some. I know I missed out on some killer stuff last year because I was asleep for it. I didn't sleep through the whole show or anything, but I definitely did not make as great a showing at the seminars as I was hoping. I never made it out to the Fantasy Flight party. I didn't make it to the charity auction. So there are some things I'm going to get to, and I'm going to plan ahead to make sure I get to them.
That's all I can think of off the top of my head. I'm sure I'll think of more awesome things that will help me prepare later. After all, I've got a month. ^_^