A random series of articles on war gaming in 40K, FOW and other systems. The headings are, WiP; Conversions and models in various states of assembly. PiP; Paint works on various models. Mission Critical; scenarios or missions to bring a bit of a twist to a normal game. MiA; rules for units and characters that could/should/might appear in a game. Dig In; How to guides on making various types of terrain for different game systems. Sit Rep; Battle reports and after action reports on games played

Monday, August 18, 2014

ETC2014 summary

ETC  2014

What was the plan

So another ETC has come and gone. With the numbers slightly up from last year, I think we 88 teams this year vs 86 last year.  I thought we might get a few more but a couple of teams had to drop out for various reasons. The year started with a couple of objectives.

Pask Vs Daemons
(1)    Do not f*ck-up, ETC 2013 was a great event and set a high standard having a good ETC2014 would show the ETC can be consistent in performance. Not a small task considering the complexity involved from all the stakeholders.
(2)    Increase the numbers. For me the main appeal of the ETC is meeting and greeting people of similar interest. Crushing their army on the table is just a bonus. So getting more people involved is a good thing.
(3)    Get more sponsors.  Working with sponsors provides free promotional material for both groups.  Having more sponsors increase the swag we can offer to players and increase their experience of the ETC. It also gives the sponsors an outlet to show their products to customers.
(4)    Improve the infrastructure.  Arguable this topic should be first not last but as far as I can tell it has always just outside the priority list. It is a bit like house keeping it has to be done but it does not have to be enjoyed.

What work

March of the wraithlords
This year’s ETC was again very good. I think all of the feedback from last year was captured. The Host Orga did an excellent job improving the event. There were some complaints regarding food and things but they can be fixed. My overall impression was of smiley happy people moving around meeting up with old friends and making new ones. This is the experience we want people to get from the ETC. The fact people are already grumbling about the ETC2015 details not being out yet is, I think strangely, a good thing since it means they are already planning for the next next.

The ETC finally has its own web present I am not sure how long the event has been going on for but at last we can point people to somewhere on the web and “go there to find out more about the ETC”.  The website is still a work in progress and it may not end up as planned but it is the first solid attempt at a presence on the interweb.

What did not work

Even though the numbers were up from last year I was hoping for more. We had planned to introduce a fourth system (bloodbowl). But it did not work out. I would like to get the ETC to 100 teams or 1000 players whichever comes first.  The ETC is a great experience and it would be nice to open it to more people. New system offer that chance but must be balanced with the risk they might just bleed players from other systems rather than bring new people in.

Drop pod city
Also with the sponsors even though the numbers were up from last year I think we could have done better.  I Went to Salute this year looking for sponsors but end up being sick and not being able for much.  There is also a couple of obstacles that need to be overcome. First not everybody has heard of the ETC, contacting a potential sponsor and asking them if they are interest in working together does not get off to a good start if you need to explain who you are.  The ETC is a team event so prize support tends to be larger than a normal event and some sponsors balk at that commitment. Hopefully, the web presence and the continued positive feedback will make more potential sponsors more keen to get involved.  Also at this stage most of the companies have already been approached and are sponsoring national teams. Which is good for the team, but does not add much to everybody else experience. That said there were positives on the sponsors front. Mantic games again set the standard of how companies should engage the community. Last year they provided figures for all the 40K and WHFB players. This year they provided enough terrain for 16 tables. The ETC is a very terrain hungry beast and more terrain is always welcome. Not far behind them is Battlefront which offered kit for all the FoW players. Souvenirs are also popular. Also a special mention must go to Heer46. This was Denis’ first time sponsoring an ETC event (FoW bested painted army) and he supplied 2kgs of resin goodness to the winners.

What would be nice to try next

The sponsors wall
For next year I would like the ETC to again not f*ck-up. The ETC is back on the move. Next year we are heading to Prague. We have a different Host Orga and a different venue I hope we have the same fun.  It is our first time in a capital city and it remains to be seen if it is better to play in a big city or if we should aim for a small city and try to take it over for a week J.

For next year again I would like to increase the player count. There is four new systems on the shortlist it would be nice if at least one makes the cut and runs at next year’s ETC.  As gamers I think most players drift in and out of systems, having a new system there might give people a chance to try something new. But this needs to be balanced with the concerns of bleeding players from other systems or creating an event that is just too big for itself.

I would again like to hunt for more sponsors. For me the Adepticon ViP bag is the gold standard in a sponsored event. I would very much the ETC being able to offer something similar.

That is all for now thanks for stopping by.

post script; The pictures comes for the 40K ESC where I was ref. I had planned to do a post on the line of sight questions. Normally for that type of question I take a photo from the model questions point of view then zoom in to see if I can see anything. But for the singles I was only asked a single LOS question.

Nids on the march
IG line up
Drop pod Vs drop pod
Line of sight question. Can you see me?
IG on the advance
Wally-bots on the move
waddling along
Nids swoop in 
more swooping nids
Vit (40Kref) ponders on how to get more tanks in his IG army

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