(^The title's a lie, it's completely normal - I'm just grasping for puns)
Happy with our morning routine, little changed but the addition of a delicious sausage roll. On to Essen for Friday, Day Two.
A similar journey in, so I kept my head in my journal and pestered Steve for some inspiration on design ideas for a tabletop implementation of the 'Fog of War' that hasn't been done yet (everything that currently exists is bad), in order to make a map-exploration segment of an RPG viable and fun. Nailed it before we reached Essen, but if you want to know what it is, you'll have to join my weekly roleplaying-group-that-doesn't-exist-yet to find out.
First order of the day (though apparently it was already half eleven) was securing a pair of tickets to the Dice Tower Panel at 5pm - free, but limited seats. The Dice Tower team were at their booth, but I always imagine walking up to people I don't know (and appreciate the work of) and feeling incredibly awkward after saying 'Great thing that it is that you do, thanks!'. Last person that was lucky enough to get that treatment was DJ Lethal (bring it on!) and I had no urge for a repeat. "Hey Tom, you're tall!", "Hey Zee, so what game did you like today?", "Hey Sam, great beard! Have you played any beard games?". We also spotted Jason a little later tearing round the halls with a bag of games on his back nearly as big as him - I'd say like some kind of a Santa Claus, but they were clearly all for him.
Onward we headed, back to the folks at The Dicey Company to offer some feedback and hear about features they intend to implement. They'd turned the day into a crowd-sourced brainstorm, as usage of the app at the Spiel had been lower than they had anticipated on the first day - turns out people are more interested in looking around, demoing and buying than organised gaming. Had a great chat about the hobby and how friendly the industry is, and went on our way. Good luck to them - if you're interested, you can keep an eye on the project via their Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/thediceycompany/)
We swung by WinGo again for a chat, but they were extremely busy at that point, so we left them to it. Will catch up with them Sunday.
The high-point of the day was stopping at the Syrinscape booth. This is environmental audio for tabletop gaming (or game stores, or reading, or going to sleep). It's much more advanced than other similar software, with dynamically generated audio that's fully customizable (with sliders!) so repeating loops aren't a thing. Go and download and have a play with their free demo on their website (https://syrinscape.com/) now! Back? Good. Awesome isn't it. Get the person with the most disposable income in your gaming group to subscribe to it so your gaming nights can be finally free OF THAT BLOODY CONAN THE BARBARIAN SOUNDTRACK. Hoping to be able to offer a customised soundscape as a stretch rewards for our upcoming Kickstarters, for those who are also impressed!
continued in the comments...