There is a real advantage to Big Bad Con being small. At this size (under 300 guests) I can personally oversee every part of it from start to finish. Is my dedication to the con obsessive-compulsive? Well, yes, it probably is. Here is how you reap the benefits:
When a game fills up five minutes after registration opens, I’m on it! I start sending out emails to the GM. Can you run another instance of that game? What about a similar one? If they can’t, what other GMs do I know that could run a game with the same system? And trust me, I’ve been gaming in California for a while, I know a lot of GMs.
If a game isn’t filling up and GM won’t be able to run it, I start headhunting for just the right players. I spread the word on social networks and talk to my friends. I find people that would love the game but haven’t heard of it yet. I make sure games will run.
I put all of your games on the back of your badge. Whether you’re playing or GMing, you know what time and where all of your games are, all con long, just by looking at your badge.
I’ve built achievements based on accomplishments at the con. Did you bring canned food the Alemeda County Community food bank? We’re giving you a special pin for that. Run a game? You get a pin. Run several? You get a special pin for helping out. Compete in the Big Bad GM? You’ll have a pin to prove you were there. Tiny. Collectible. Awesome. Warning: Also sharp like The Wolf’s fangs.
During the con The Wolf and all the staff are at the reg desk, in open gaming, or walking the halls, keeping an eye out for any problems that come up. Something goes wrong, a room runs out of water, looking for a game? Just let us know and we’ll help you out.
Finally, I’m just a guy you know. I’m easy to find. You can email me anytime email@example.com. You can find me at the con and talk to me. If you have an idea for how to improve the con, or something is giving you trouble, hit me up. I’m easy to find; I’ll be the one standing 3” off the ground because I’m so happy the con is happening.
End result: Big Bad Con 2011 ran without a snag. Gamers were in games having a great time, rather than wandering the halls looking for fun. By keeping the growth controlled (20% increase in gaming space by adding private rooms, but otherwise the con is staying small and continues to focus on RPGs and LARPs) I’m making sure that as the con expands in 2012, we’re ready to make it run like a fine oiled machine, just like last year.