Friday
Feb012013

Put Your Game Face On

They decided to show me their best game face.

There was a time when the mere mention of board games elicited dreary images of playing a monotonous round of Monopoly.  Things have changed from then.  Now people actively seek new games to play with friends at board game cafes and watch web series based around playing them.  With Game Summit at the Palais des Congrès, there’s even an entire convention devoted to finding, learning and playing new games.

This year’s event, running from February 2nd to 3rd, is predicted to be nearly twice to three times as popular as last year’s according the event’s Chief Games Ambassador, Marquis Côté.  That’s saying something since last year they had about 900 people in attendance. 

This is likely thanks in part to the event’s friendliness to newcomers as well as veteran game players.

“If you want to learn a new board game, this is the place to be,” Côté said.

Logo_GameSummit_ELearning a new game can be quite an intimidating process.  The printed rule sets can often be difficult to understand.  If the rules come in a thick booklet, they can even be a little intimidating. To that end, there will be 100 volunteers around to show newcomers how to play any game that interests them.  Intimidating instructions can be left in the box.

Along the same lines, the event has become even friendlier to families with little children.  The introduction of the Kinder Zone to this year’s event sees an entire section where little children can play.  Parents can drop the children off with the staff from Monkeying Around while they go and explore the rest of the event.

“We know, as parents ourselves, we know that spending four hours and having kids around and trying to play a game is difficult,” Côté said.

Those looking to take a little bit of a break between gaming sessions can also find some shopping available.  The Ottawa Geek Market has joined forces with Game Summit to bring together exhibitors and artisans for the event.  Two entire halls will be devoted to artisans showing their wares.  So if a steampunk timepiece is what’s desired, chances are it’ll be here.

The event has been picking up steam year after year.  People from all over Ontario and Quebec make their way down to Game Summit each year.  Some even come from as far as Boston.  It’s garnering the reputation among geeks, and those who want to be, as something not to be missed.

“That’s what we want it to be,”  Côté said.

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