Friday, September 8, 2017

Nova Open 2017 Impressions Part 1

Hey Everyone!  Hope you had a great week of Hobby with plans for more throughout the weekend.  Today I want to bring you more coverage of my time at Nova Open 2017 looking more at a general recap, how I spent my time and all the great people I got to know better, meet, and spend time with throughout the weekend.  In one of the next posts in this series, I will do a more in depth breakdown of my games so keep a look out.  I am sure I missed mentioning a few people in the sections below and if I did I apologize, but know you helped make this an amazing experience for me and I cannot wait to see you all at the next one!

My driving skills have mixed reviews apparently

Any trip to a convention is a great time with the excitement and promise of a fun weekend when you arrive.  I am very fortunate that Nova is only 3.5 hours from my home and I had a few friends coming along so it made the road trip quite a bit of fun!  Myself, Matt, and Sean loaded into the car after work on Thursday and hit the road!

We arrived late in the night and after settling in headed up to the Nova Open Charity Lounge which was going strong.  It was a very relaxed scene where we could grab drinks and chat with other Hobbyists about our armies, games, and upcoming events.  I was also able to finally meet Aaron Bostian who runs the Narrative Age of Sigmar Events.  We shared a few drinks and got to know each other a bit more and had a great evening.  It was nice seeing other familiar and friendly faces all gathered to share a good time.

Thunder Buddies for life

Waking up Friday saw myself and Matt dawning the Title of Thunder Buddies in the Age of Sigmar Team Event.  We each rocked up with Stormcast and meet great people in our games and even got to play with a few of our local scenes top players in the second round.  Lightning only struck once as our record will show, but it was three great games of Age of Sigmar.

A quite Age of Sigmar/Hobbit Hall

After the armies were packed away a few of us headed out to grab some dinner followed by me heading back for another game.  This time it was Triumph and Treachery in one of the Age of Sigmar Narrative Events.  I got to meet some great people including Chris, who was introduced to me by Aaron, as we played on the same table.  The game was an odd deployment which actually kept me out of most of the game as my Stormcast had to foot slog it over the board.  During that time I got to chat with Vince quite a bit and share ideas of the future of the game, lore, and other musings.  After a while, I managed to get within range, due to some shady deals and got stuck in and after more wheeling and dealing I was awarded most Treacherous from those at my table which in a game of Triumph and Treachery is a goal of mine.

A day of gaming was wrapped up and it was time to head to the Charity Lounge again for a few drinks and socializing.  I got to meet some a few great people while hanging out such as Jason who handles Warhammer 40k at Adepticon (if I recall correctly) and I was able to meet the man himself Mike Brandt who runs the show at Nova with the support of all the amazing volunteers.  Mike is very passionate about the event, the volunteers who he refers to them as a family, and what we as a community are doing for charity through Nova Open.  It was nice to see Pete and the rest of the crew from Games Workshop hanging out as well and talking hobby with everyone.  It was another great night catching up with friends and meeting new people.

Warhammer TV was out in force

Saturday morning saw me awake bright and early to grab breakfast before the Age of Sigmar Grand Tournament.  I headed down with a bit of nervousness and excitement for the games ahead.  I shouldn't have been nervous as I had three of the best games I could ever hope for anywhere.  My opponents gave me a challenging game while keeping it all about the fun and I did my part to do the same for them.  High-fives and cheering each other on is what really made these games.  I ended the day in what was later dubbed as Perfect GT Karma (1-1-1).  I was also able to catch up a bit with my friend Miles who arrived to hang out with everyone for a few days.  It was great seeing more and more friends at the event including others from my local scene such as Bill, Roger, Ryan, Mike S., Jason, Linda, Christian, Jenn, Matt, Aaron, and Evan!

The lovely lobby at the venue

I followed my gaming with a brief rest in the hotel room.  I met up with Vince, Kelly, Miles and headed to a seminar presented by Games Workshop talking about Generals Handbook 2017 and beyond with David, Andy, and Pete.  I was also thankful to meet someone who I have followed on Twitter for quite a while, Joe, who will be running Age of Sigmar for The Renegade Open in November.  Joe is a great guy and it should be an exciting event.  I won't dive into the details here as Vince covered it nicely in his latest Warhammer Weekly video, but I can say this will be a very exciting year for Age of Sigmar!

Directly after I was fortunate enough to sit down with Kelly, Vince, Miles, and Joe to talk with Pete Foley in a follow-up meeting from Adepticon discussing the U.S. AoS Community.  After a great talk, we headed over to a Shadespire Seminar which got me excited to buy this game when it arrives this fall.  Deciding which faction to play will be the hard decision.

Live Music, Drinks, Friends, and helping charity

Saturday night saw Mike Brandt's band playing live in the Charity Lounge and boy did they blow the roof off.  I won't lie that I partied a little harder and longer than I expected this night.  I bought a few rounds for the great team from Games Workshop and Forgeworld as well as other friends who were out having a good time.  They all, in turn, did the same for me right after I finished my drink.  I did not get to wild, but I knew I would be hard pressed to play in my last two games of the GT on Sunday.  I still can't tell if I was a bad influence on Dan or if he was a bad influence on me, but it was a great night!  After climbing into bed around 4:30 am I knew I would not be gaming and dropped from the event so sadly I will not be able to bring you coverage from those last few games.

I should have known this crew was going to be trouble

While I might have dropped I found I enjoyed hanging out with everyone and just wandering the halls quite a bit.  It reminded me that the community is more than the game, but the game is how we all connect and is integral.  I spent the afternoon watching Vince do very well at the Capital Palette as well as my friend Sean achieving a medal with his first entry into the event as well.  You can read more about that in my prior post.  It was great to sit back and cheer them on and see them do so well.

The evening wrapped up with one last Seminar hosted by Games Workshop on Building a Community.  Those who know me well will realize this was the one I was waiting for as I love the Warhammer Community and am doing everything I can to help it grow, connect, and become bigger than ever before and I couldn't do it without all those around me who feel the same.  It was nice seeing others opinions on the community and even making a few more connections of like minded people who care a lot about our community.  Games Workshop really cares about the community and I am of the mind we should do all we can to help each other grow.

Closing/Award Ceremonies

The whole event wrapped up with a Closing/Award Ceremony.  After the awards were handed out and the goodbyes were exchanged me, Matt and Sean hit the road homeward and after a few hours of telling our stories, we made it home in one piece.  I have been asked if I prefer Nova Open or Adepticon by a few people and I can safely say "Yes".  They are each top level events, but there is no comparing as they each have their own charm and reason to attend.  I will be back at Nova next year without a doubt and I will count the days until its back.

New Album from  the new Band "Grim Dank" coming soon

See you all next week, Happy Hobbying!