Big Bad Con has two issues that I would like to improve!

Mar 14, 2014

Doctors Without Borders1. Donations raised for Doctors Without Borders. Much as I keep costs low and raise additional income (dealers room, sponsoring from Evil Hat, t-shirt sales, Crowdrise fundraising for the Wolf Chase), the con only raised about $500 last year. While I planned to split the proceeds between DWB and seed money for the next year's con, the amount was less than I hoped, so I gave the full amount to DWB.

2. Game sign-ups. When sign-ups first open, the web host simply cannot handle the traffic. I've used WordPress optimization techniques and moved the site onto a virtual private server, but those improvements weren’t adequate. Moving to a dedicated server would be costly, and bite into issue #1 above.

I have an idea that I think might help out both of these issues. The idea is:

Changing the benefit for GMs

  • Early sign-ups, a week in advance.
  • One game sign-up per game run.
  • GMs would buy badges normally, before submitting games to run.

Benefits

  • A significant number of sign-ups would be done before reg opens, reducing lag on the website.
  • We would raise more money for Doctors Without Borders.

Logistical Challenges

  • Some games might fill up before general signups open.*
  • Can a GM give away early signs-ups to other attendees?
  • How will the system limit the number of games a GM can sign up for?

I'm sure there are others as well. I have some ideas for those which I'll work in detail if this change comes to fruition.

I want to get an idea from both players and GMs if this change is something you want. If you have any other concerns about how this would work, please leave them in the comments below.

*Every time I see game fill up quickly, I immediately start looking for GMs to run extra sessions of those games. So even if GMs do fill up a game, I'll work on getting another one on the schedule.

Please let me know.

Illustrations by Eden Parkinson
Website by Colin Fahrion

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