Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Tournament Tuesdays: My Final Thought's on Invasion Kenosha II

Now that Invasion Kenosha II is over and I have taken a break, I think it is time to post my final thoughts on the event and share some ideas for next year.

Overall, I was very happy with the results of the event. The crowd was great and the atmosphere really felt like one that was full of joy, happiness and fun. To that end, I measure Invasion Kenosha II to be a success!

Like with everything I do in life, I always ask myself what I could have done better with this even. The first thing I wish I would have done better was stick to the schedule. When the event was over, I ended up running about an hour over from what I expected. I like to keep things on time, and I got hung up a little at points, which caused for some delays. I think I can fix those hang-ups for next year, so it shouldn’t be a problem.

I thought the scenarios and story for this year were good. I wish I would have had time to get more short stories written and published on the site before the event, but I can only do so much. I also wish I would have gotten a prelude scenario finished and posted, but again, I ran out of time. Since this years Invasion is the first part of a series I call “Old Magic”, I will be able to use the scenarios from Invasion Kenosha II as the preludes for next year.

Another point regarding the scenarios that I would like to explore is broader playtesting. This year’s scenarios were playtested by myself and a few others (thanks Paul & Nick). Since my travels are taking me to Scottsdale a lot in 2010, I think I am going to take advantage of the great community out there and playtest a lot more.

One last point regarding scenarios and scoring that I would like to make is a slight change to the scoresheets. Two games were scored wrong during the second round that would have had an impact on the results of the event and winners. In both cases, the scores for each player were written in the wrong corresponding box. To prevent this from happening next year, I will be adding a small box beside each scoring box that the player must initial. I really want to stick to one scoresheet per game, so I am hoping this change will prevent the mistake from happening again.

With regards to food, I really think we could have used more. We had plenty of sodas and water, but the catering was a little lighter than I would have liked. I am also going to look at a different service for next year, as the food was good, but I think I could have done better when it came to quantity versus cost.

The swag bags were a huge win for this year’s Invasion. The surprise by Avatars of War made the opening of Invasion a fun time as people compared figures and traded. The bases from Back-2-Bases-IX were also a huge success. The colored brochure in each tournament pack was great, and people getting one of the best themed bases in the business only made things even better. I am really hopeful that the relationships established with these companies will continue into next year’s Invasion.

The prize support was also top-notch. Again, huge thanks to everyone that provided prizes for the tournament, general raffle, and charity raffle. It was a lot of stuff to give away and I was really glad to give away to the Overall Winner a brand new Skaven army. I was also very excited about the Maow Miniatures as prizes. I had quite a few discussions about the Monster Dice and hope that this translates into them getting a lot of business.

One last change that I will need to make for next year is with regards to the sponsoring of Invasion. I had a few “sponsors” want to participate and make commitments that they did not live up to. While I fully understand on a personal level, as the organizer of the event, I feel it looks bad and not fair to the great sponsors that did step-up and provide timely support for the event. Hopefully some small changes will resolve this problem in the future.

So what does the future hold for Invasion Kenosha III? Let me begin by saying that I am looking at January 15, 2011 as the date for the next Invasion. While this is not official, I can safely say that it is the target date and what I am planning around at this time. With regards to the location of Invasion Kenosha III, my hope and plan is to hold it once again at Rockhead’s. Allen and Laurie are simply the greatest and all of the help they provided meant a lot to me.

As for ideas and changes for next year, I have a few things that are floating around in my head. The current rumor is that 8th edition will be hitting this summer, so how that will impact the event is uncertain. I fully expect the event to still focus on 1000 point, fully painted armies, but there may be a few slight changes based on the new rules. Do not worry, I am not going to make Invasion suddenly 2000 points and painting not required.

Outside of the changes brought about by 8th edition, I am going to explore some ideas during the quiet time. One idea I am considering is called the Triad Competition. The idea is that during check-in, three players can register as a triad, which will cost the team an additional $5.00 total (not per person). Players will still play individually and such, but there will be a set of awards and prizes for the best triad.

Another idea that I am floating is to add an army book score to the scoring system. The idea is that each specific army book has a pool of 10 points. At the start of the event, each pool is divided by the number of players using that specific book. So for example, if only one player uses a specific army book, they would have an additional 10 points added to their overall score. If three players are using the book, each player would receive an additional 3.3 points added to their overall score. The reason for doing this would be to motivate more diversity in the army books used at the next Invasion.

One last thing that I am expecting for the next Invasion is to have enough tables built that the tournament will have a visual theme. This year’s Terrain Contest was kind of a wash, but I have been slowly build for the last few years, so I expect Invasion Kenosha III to be the first year where I can rollout my vision of how I want the tables to look. (Please note, the terrain provided by Rockhead’s is great. I am really just wanting to take the event to the next level and really step-up the theme of each Invasion.)

Before I end this reflection, I want to give some thanks once last time. Thank you to my wife for all of her help getting things prepared. Thank you to my brother for helping to write some of the stories and giving his input on stuff. Thanks to Aaron from Back-2-Base-IX for being the first to step-up and provide support for the swag bags. Thanks to Johanna from AoW for providing the cool surprise and amazing models for the bags. Thanks to Matou for bringing your awesome products to Invasion. Allen, Laurie, Nick, and Rick, thanks for providing all of the help setting-up, breaking down, and just championing this event. Thanks to Eric and WWHFB for providing some amazing prizes for the charity raffle and being a great forum to chat about Invasion. Thank you to Marty and the Old Farts of Warhammer for providing donations in the form of prizes for the charity raffle. Thanks to Robert, Dan, and the guys from Rites of War for setting up a board just for Invasion. Thanks to Tony and the Cheddar Bowl III for donating prizes towards the tournament awards. Lastly, I thank everyone who took the time and money to participate in Invasion Kenosha II. Without you, there is no Invasion!

Again, it has been a pleasure and honor running this year’s Invasion. The support, efforts, and love from the hobby community are what inspire me to make each Invasion special and great. So until next year, keep gaming and painting, for signs will surely appear when the next invasion is coming…

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