VCON 34 – Oct 2-4, 2009

The following post is an announcement received from Jenni Merrifield at VCON in Vancouver, BC. The convention sounds like a lot of fun!


My name is Jenni Merrifield and I have recently taken over the role of Games Coordinator for VCON 34. I am sending out this message to gamers and gaming groups primarily in Western Canada and the Pacific Northwest as a call to action – by promoting the VCON games room and filling you in on some of the incentives available for gamers in general and anyone interested in hosting game events during the convention I hope to encourage you and all your friends to come out to our event!

Quick Summary for the “TLDR” crowd

  • VCON is Western Canada’s longest running science fiction, fantasy and gaming fan convention, held in the Vancouver, BC, Canada metropolitan area every October. VCON 34 is Oct 2-4, 2009. Details at
  • VCON 34’s games room is open 24 hours and has scheduled game events, drop in games, and free-play tables available.
  • There is a reduced price pass for those who are primarily interested in gaming scene and do not intend to attend other scheduled programming.
  • More hosts are needed to run scheduled game events during core programming hours – any host who commits to at least 4 hours of game events is eligible for a discounted membership rate.
  • The VCON 34 Games Coordinator is looking to connect with individuals with almost any significant connection to the table top or video gaming industries who would be interested in attending the con as a programming guest and participating in game related programming.

About VCON

VCON is Western Canada’s longest running science fiction, fantasy and gaming fan convention and is held in the Vancouver, BC, Canada metropolitan area every October. VCON 34 is October 2-4, 2009 at the Downtown Marriott Pinnacle Vancouver.

Our Guests of Honour this year are:

  • Tanya Huff (Author GoH)
  • Miles Teves (Artist GoH)
  • Christine Willes (Media GoH)
  • plus Special Guests The “GeeksOn” Podcasters

Full convention details are available on our web site:

The VCON Games Room

The VCON Games room is open 24 hours from shortly after the convention opens on Friday until close of con on Sunday. There will be several types of tables available:

These are tables where pre-scheduled gaming events will be held during VCON’s core programming hours (Friday, 2pm to midnight; Saturday 10a to midnight; Sunday 10a to 4p). While the majority of the events will be scheduled game play these tables may also host game demos, focused round table discussions on gaming topics and other such events.

Tourney Registration:
There will be a registration table in place for any game tourneys to be held during the convention where members can register for the tourney and take care of anything else required by the tourney host.

These tables are run by a game host over the whole weekend. Members can join in whatever games a host decides to run from the library of games they’ve brought with them.

Bring in your own game supplies and start up a pick-up game of any kind at any time. Whether it’s a board game, a card game, a roleplaying game or something else, pick a table, find some other interested members and go to it!

We also offer the VCON Game Library to members during core programming hours. This is a collection of familiar classics and interesting newer games that the convention has been collecting over the past several years. These games may be borrowed from the library by any member and used on the Free-Play tables.

VCON Membership Rates

If you’re interested in more than just gaming, and purchase your membership before September 15, you can get an adult membership for just $45 CDN – a $15 savings over the $60 “at the door” price. There are also reduced rates for Students (with valid student card) and Children from 7 to 12 (Children under 7 can attend free).

We also offer a “Games and Exhibits Only” pass for $30 CDN. This restricted access pass allows entry to the exhibits (Dealers Room, Art Gallery, etc) and participation in the Games Room. It is designed for those who are primarily interested in these areas of the convention and do not intend to attend any standard programmed sessions.

See the registration page on our web site for complete details:

If you live in the USA:

For those who live south of the 49th parallel, the early registration adult rate is approximately $41 USD versus the approximately $54 USD “at the door” rate. The “Games and Exhibits Only” pass is approximately $27 USD.

Also, new US border crossing regulations mean you will need a valid passport, a Nexus card or one of those “Enhanced Drivers Licenses” if you want the US border guards to let you re-enter your home country. In other words – if you don’t already have one of these forms of identity, get your game on and complete the necessary paperwork and legwork already! We want you to come up and visit us!

Incentives for Game Hosts

In order to make the VCON Games Room a success, we have a desperate need for game hosts – mainly those willing to run game events on the Scheduled tables although we’re also interested in anyone willing to bring along their own game library and host a Drop-In table.

Core programming hours are 2p to midnight Friday, 10a to midnight Saturday, and 10a to 4p Sunday. There will be at least two tables available for scheduled games at any one time – and possibly more if we get enough interested hosts.

The games room Schedule will be broken up into half-hour chunks, and each hosted game event will be given a minimum of one and a half hours duration but can have as many half-hour chunks as the host desires so long as the necessary space is available in the schedule. The first fifteen minutes to half an hour of each event is intended to be used to allow players and host to get organized and settled so the minimum expected duration of a game event is actually only an hour. Note that schedule time slots will be handed out on a first-come-first-served basis, so be sure to register early if you want to assure you get your preferred time slot!

Hosts who commit to hosting a cumulative total of at least four hours over the weekend (e.g., three 1.5-hour sessions, two 2-hour sessions, one four hour session) are eligible for a Game Host rate – $30 CDN ($27 USD) for Adult or $20 CDN ($18 USD) for “Games and Exhibits Only.” Drop In table hosts are also eligible for these discounts.

Anyone interested in hosting a scheduled game event or who is interested in bringing along a library of games and manning a Drop In table can contact me directly by email at vcongames [at] gmail [dot] com.

In Search of Games Programming Guests

Our roster of games programming guests could also use some bolstering so I am looking to connect with any individual or company with almost any reasonable connection to the table-top and video game industries who would be interested in attending the con as a programming guest.

Programming guests are invited to the con and asked to participate in at least two or three game related programming sessions in return for fame, fortune and prestige (well, okay, not fame and fortune, but there’s certainly some prestige earned from other convention members!) and probably some other perks that I’m unable to disclose (but only because I don’t know what they are – you have to get invited by the Programming Coordinator to find out). So, whether you’re a game designer, game artist, game developer, game reviewer or whatever, I’d like to hear from you!

Any interested parties can also contact me directly by email at vcongames [at] gmail [dot] com.

Wrap Up

Well, that’s the spiel folks. I hope that each one of you will check out our web site ( and give some serious consideration to attending VCON 34 this year. Even more so if you’re interested in hosting games or participating in games programming!

October 2 is only a few weeks away, so don’t spend too much time thinking about it!

Good Gaming!

Jenni Merrifield
VCON 34 Games Coordinator
vcongames [at] gmail [dot] com

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