I had met up with Mick Reddick and David Black for some breakfast prior to arriving at the con. There was no skulduggery involved in our entrance to the venue, none at all. No sir.
Mick Reddick knows absolutely fucking everyone. Not a joke. He couldn't go five feet or drink a cup of tea without bumping into some gamer buddy or other.
I bought nothing. I have to admit I was a bit bewildered by the trade floor. There was so much stuff on offer but basically nothing I wanted or didn't already own. I'm not a collector of rpg stuff, I like things I can use and when I own things I haven't used they gnaw at me... Mick bought some Lamentations of the Flame Princess stuff to round out his collection and Dave bought Stonehell, which he already had as a PDF but wanted a book of, and some ugly neon dice to play his Hivelife 1979 retro future D&D hack with.
Then we headed up to the bar to set up for some games. I ran a Grim North session with Oli Palmer, Kathryn Jenkins, Rachel Tew and Rachel's other half Andy. Rachel and Oli have played in the a Grim North before via hangouts and it was nice to meet up face to face and throw down in a tale of one man and his potentially evil beard. We didn't get to resolve the session due to time constraints. As is fairly normal for me I rambled aimlessly along and we finished up with the players looking to sacrifice a chicken in order to carry out some sort of divination on the evil beard while its owner was kept in a state of near constant inebriation by wine toting slaves. Good times.
With too many players for one game Mick had recruited enough random passers by to make up two games and Dave stepped up to run his rag tag bunch of plucky misfits through Stonehell using his streamlined retro clone Black Hack. I ran Mick's fighter for about 45 minutes while both Stonehell and Black Hack proved their worth. David is clearly cool with GMing a game with zero prep and his Black Hack system runs really smooth and easy. Stonehell is a great resource and it was handled well. Everyone at the table was having a great time, even if I nearly got Mick's character killed at the end. Still, what's a bit of crippling between friends?
Things I learned. David Black both writes and runs a good game. Seek out his work and enjoy it. He runs games via G+ UK OSR Hangouts community. His Black Hack rule set is available for free on the internet. Mick Reddick is a force of gaming nature, when a man says "I'll just nip downstairs and get two more players" even at a gaming convention I don't expect him to be back inside of two minutes! And last but not least the UK OSR Hangouts Community is a great place, filled with lovely people who I have thoroughly enjoyed gaming with so far, and long may it continue.
I'm going to write a quick session report for the Grim North game tomorrow.