What I find is ... when you do fall behind, you quickly find yourself with so many things to talk about, you can't quite decide which one to write first, which can be its own form of writer's block.
So NOVA Open 2015 ... it's a huge work in progress right from the end of the prior year to plan the thing out.
There's a lot going on and going about with it.
We're hosting the first ever National Championships for Malifaux. We're talking about bringing a DZC tournament to the field. We're talking about how to handle as many as 100+ people for WM/H, Mali, X-Wing each respectively.
But the elephant in the room still has to be, in a lot of ways, Warhammer 40K, and what to set as the format for the various events we're hosting in it.
The Narrative has been enormously successful, increasingly so. We're doing the Narrative yet one better this coming year, and I trust the guys at the helm of it.
Trios Team Tournament has been a good warm-up for 30-40 people each year ... should we stick with it as it is? Remains a question to be finalized.
The Invitational is back (really, by popular demand). Maybe one of these years we'll divorce it from the con altogether and hold it at a different time during the year, but not for 2015.
A common discussion lately has been about Highlander as a 40K Format. This also coincides with a quite common discussion about creating a dynamic gaming component to the NOVA (that is - less structured from a schedule perspective).
Following the "Highlander" theme, Quickenings at NOVA 2015 will be quick-turn, smaller points value, winner-take-all cash return 8-player "Booster style" events running continuously on the side throughout the con weekend, and beginning possibly as early as Wednesday night.
One thing led to another, and so what we've done is added a dynamic Highlander-inclusive concept to the NOVA for next year. Going on throughout the con will be kick-off moments at which a hypothetical Highlander "Quickening" event can fire (or multiple ones). Any time leading up to each firepoint, people can sign up to participate in the next Quickening. As long as at least 8 players have signed up, a Quickening will begin. These events will be lower points value, with more flexible army rules to enable those who attended for the GT/Narrative to easily drop in, and will field much more streamlined and quick-playing mission formats. Prize payout will be a % of registration cash for the 3-0 winner, and the 0-3 lowest.
Then, a common thing that happens on Sundays is 40K GT players who are not in the "Final Four" for their Bracket choose to drop and participate in other things (which we actually encourage and Torrent of Fire built into their software, cool guys that they are). To support that and provide a different pace of 40K activity, we'll host a larger Highlander tournament on Sunday (The Gathering, natch).
Details are still forthcoming on a lot of this, but we're pacing - as ever - yet another "biggest and best NOVA yet." It's also exciting that GenCon is more than a month separate from us this time around. GenCon always siphons some attendance from an attendee perspective *and* a Vendor perspective. There are some fantastic bits of waterfall from that which will contribute to making NOVA even more awesome.
Would you participate in short-turn (think 4-6 hour blocks) Quickening events at NOVA in your off hours / evenings? Would you be interested in participating in a Gathering event on Sunday if you aren't in your GT bracket? Would you attend just for these things if you aren't really the GT type?
Additionally, what kinds of things would you like to see a little different in the main GT format this year? We received a lot of excellent feedback on the survey, and we're working hard. Missions will probably be in some ways similar, but they've been heavily revised based upon feedback (the missions received enormously high-% praise, but we took the small # of critiques to heart in an effort to make them even better, and that was reflected in the 11th Company GT missions this year).
Much to come, much to discuss. I'll see what I can do to get fully back on track here.