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GenCon '97 and RPGnet

We have a booth in the dealer's room at GenCon this year, and will cheerfully talk with anyone who stops by. If you're curious as to why we're here, what we're hoping to do, or just want to be sociable, come on by! And don't forget to peek at the "How to survive GenCon" guide! We are also running a pair of seminars about the Web, and helping with other events:
Gaming and the World Wide Web, Friday 10:00 a.m.-11:45 a.m., Hyatt 2nd floor, Regency D. Sandy Antunes will lead a moderated discussion on gaming and the web.

This will actually be a panel-discussion, with a panel of 6 people. We'll have two listkeepers (possibly woodelf and one of the Phoenyx folks, still being decided), two e-zine start-ups (Gamers World and Gamer's Haven), and two online gaming reps (GameVerse and WebRPG). I'll be doing an introduction, then moderating a discussion on issues including: what resources are out there, is the web shifting to a pay-per-view approach, and how is technology improving web-based real-time online gaming? It should be fun and lively, and we're welcoming input and questions from the whole crowd.

Part of this will also simply talk about what is out there, and what is useful. So, if you're new to the web, you'll get some good information. If you've been on it for a while, you'll get to share your experiences and get new information. And in both cases, you'll get a good idea of what to expect for the next year or so (and you'll find out why predicting web stuff further than 1 year is folly.)

Web Site Redesign: Why & How?, Saturday 10:00 a.m.-11:45 a.m., Hyatt 2nd floor, Regency D. Emma Kolstad will talk about role-playing-related sites and how to make them more usable.

Emma will be starting this with her web redesign talk. If you design your own pages, you really should attend to learn the most efficient and useful ways to approach this. This will take up the first half of the period. The second half will be a chance to share anecdotal experiences of what has worked and what hasn't for individual sites, and hopefully all participants will leave with lots of new ideas on how to improve their sites. The first half is geared towards novice and professional webmasters, and the second half is useful to web novices and the web-curious as well.

After all, a web site isn't just "writing an HTML page" any more than a role-playing Company is "writing a game system." There's a lot more to the web that's within reach, if you are willing to approach it in a professional manner. If you maintain your own pages, you really have no excuse not to attend and learn the simple tricks that make a site better, faster, and cheaper.

In the freelance vein, we are also running the Chaosium "Cthulhu Live" demos, in slots 8 (Friday, 8-midnight) and 12 (Saturday, 8-midnight). The game itself is 1 hour long, so we'll run it four times in each slot. Once you're registered for the game, go to the Chaosium booth to get a specific time slot. It should be a lot of fun-- we have about a dozen people helping to run this one! It will be run in the four "secret" rooms (CHA13A, CHA13C, CHA13C and AXT), so expect to travel into new realms of weirdness-- live!

The GPA (Game Publishers Association) is running a pair of seminars on self-publishing. Although we (RPGnet) aren't technically running these, as GPA members we thought it worth bringing to your attention. The two are running back to back, and are:

700099, So, You Want to Publish Games?
Join members of the GPA (Game Publishers Association) to discuss the joys and woes of publishing games. Learn what the GPA can do for its members. Slot 03B TH at 1800 to 1945, EXEC-D/2nd Floor Hyatt/Hyatt Regency Hotel

700152, Publishing Your Own Game
Chris Clark will join James Wallis and other industry figures to discuss the perils and pitfalls of self-publishing. Don't make the same mistakes they did! Learn how to go about putting out your own book. Slot 04A TH at 8pm-9:45pm, Lake-B, 1st Floor Hyatt Regency Hotel.

Finally, the GPA Members Product Update #4 will be available at the GPA booth. This lists all the products available from the many, many small press companies that are part of the GPA. So if you're looking for new games, and the "big four" aren't impressing you, this is definitely the freebie to get!

We hope you enjoy GenCon, and will see you there!

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