Let's do it again next year
In a shock development, we have decided to hold MidCon
again next year and, to put the minds of many of
you at rest, it is almost certain we will be staying
at the Hallmark.
Quite a few of you were vehement in your advice
that we do not move the con away from its current
location, and I can assure you that the committee is
just as happy with the hotel as you lot appear to
be, but we have to make contingency plans based on
the growth rate of the con.
As it happens, numbers were fractionally down
this year so running out of space will probably not
be an issue for a while.
While I am here, I might as well go out on a limb
and predict that next year's con will be held on the
second weekend of November next year, but that is not
official. I only mention it so Jonty can book
the wrong weekend off at work again ... :(
John Dodds collection
Just a quick word to say thanks to those of you
who contributed generously to the charity collection
in memory of John Dodds, paying more than listed
price for the games on the charity table.
In many cases, people paid over the odds for
games not on the charity table and asked for
the money to be put in the Doddsy pot.
I understand that John's long-time friend, David
Long, who organised the sale, raised more than £400
through the sale of his and John's games, and he was
very pleased with the response.
I shall be writing to John's widow, Clare, this
week, to pass on the condolences of the few old lags
who turned up at the con and who were unaware of
As some of you discovered, the Hallmark
is now charging £8 a day to park in the hotel car
parks unless the booking is made through the
con, so be careful booking those online offers that
appear to be cheaper than MidCon if
you are intending to use the car park..
One thing to remember if you are using the car
park is you'll need to provide Reception with your
number plate, otherwise as well as getting charged
for using the car park you'll run the risk of
getting clamped and paying a hefty surcharge.
The 2016 con booklet
is now available, at least a day earlier than it
usually is. Feel free to print your own copy ahead
of the con, though there will be a few paper-based
copies on the registration desk.
We've added about seven new restaurant entries
and deleted the entry of what was once the nearest
Chinese restaurant as apparently it is now being
converted into a residence, or several residences.
This hotel is ours
Whisper it quietly, but we now have enough people
booking rooms at the hotels to completely occupy the
Midland Hotel ourselves now, should we want to
effectively take over the hotel for the entire
John Dodds, former editor of postal gaming
fanzine Perspiring Dreams, founding member of the MidCon
committee, died suddenly in September just days after
being diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
15 February 1961 - 16th
A memorial service was held for him on 20 October
in London, with many hobby old lags in attendance.
Off the top of my head, we had Chris Tringham
(another founding member of the MidCon
committee), Adam Huby, Bart Huby, Paul Oakes, Jeff
Edmunds, Colin & Marie Gamble, Ken Simpson,
Chris Dawe, Mike Moor, Dane Maslen, Mike Woodhouse,
Geoff Challinger, Richard Beattie, Brian Creese and
maybe a few more.
People flew in from as far afield as Hong Kong
and Australia to attend his memorial, which says
pretty much all you need to know about the high
regard in which he was held.
A proper obituary for John will be in the MidCon
booklet. In all probability, there'll be a bucket on
the registration desk for those of you who wants to
make a donation in his memory to Action for
Pulmonary Fibrosis, the charity nominated by his
This being the Internet age, you can donate
electronically ahead of the con.
As Jeremy Tullett remarked upon learning of
John's death, there are not so many con attendees
these days who remember him, but those who do,
remember him with a good deal of fondness.
It is no exaggeration to say that without John,
in all probability we'd be doing something else
other than attending MidCon on the
weekend of November 11-13.
Bring & Buy - earlier start
With the bulk of the paperwork done ahead of the
Bring & Buy event these days - sellers
essentially grab "games I want to sell"
sheets and post-it pads from the Registration desk
and fill them out ahead of time - we are thinking of
moving the Bring & Buy to a 10.00am start time
(for buyers) on the Saturday morning.
The theory is that gamers will finish their
breakfast, maybe linger over a coffee, and then head
off for the Bring & Buy before starting their
first game of the day.
Of course, an earlier start for buyers also means
an earlier start for sellers. As mentioned above,
you can do much of the paperwork before hand, either
by grabbing the sheets at the con from the
Registration desk (and returning them!) or,
if you prefer, you can email John Harrington (his
name's john and his web domain is fbgames.co.uk so
you can probably work out his email address) ahead
of the con and he'll send you a spreadsheet to
Make a note in your diary
The dates for MidCon 2016 have been
confirmed as 11-13 November.
As per usual, it will run from 9.00am on the
Friday until 6.00pm on the Sunday. Games often
continue after 6pm on the Sunday and people often
turn up at the hotel a day early to play games in
the bar or in a local hostelry, but those times
mentioned above are the official times.
Some people stay at the hotel on Sunday night and
should you wish to do so, please be aware that the
Saturday room rates also apply on the Sunday.
We're still negotiating room rates for Thursday
night, but I think it very likely there will be a
special MidCon rate for those of you who want
to turn up a day early so you can be at the gaming
table on Friday morning at 9.00am to have a fighting
chance of finishing that game of 18∞ finished.
form is now available, so I guess that means we
are open for bookings.
Room for expansion
The con continues to grow in popularity at a
rapid pace and that means we have had to hire more
I understand we will have the use of the Hallmark
Inn dining room for two days. I think the idea is to
use this for tournaments but don't quote me on that.
We'll also be using the Tansleydale (cracking
cheese, Gromit, etc.) and the Dovedale rooms, plus a
The con booklet is still available
Brought to you by Last minute (and then some)
productions, the 2015 con booklet
is still available to download. It is much the same as
last year but with a few updates, include the
location of new gaming rooms.
There is also an updated version of the Beginners'
Guide. Judging by the number of queries on the
MidCon thread on Board Game Geek there will
be quite a few newbies turning up, so if you see
someone looking lost and confused, clutching a game
you have never heard of, give them a helping hand.
Finally, there is a crib
sheet for those who do not want to download the
booklet and just want to know the essentials, such
as times & locations of events.
Ben Bateson ran the first
Annual MidCon Kniziathon on Sunday between
10am and 4pm in the Milldale room. That
suggests he's going to be running it again next year
(across the road in the Hallmark Inn).
Here’s some information from Ben about this:
What is a Kniziathon? It's an opportunity not
just to play your choice of Reiner Knizia's best
games, but an opportunity to do so and win prizes!
Play the games, submit the winners, and I'll
manipulate them through an overcomplicated Excel
algorithm which will produce a running score. The
people who score the most will win some games,
kindly contributed by www.knizia.de
The Kniziathon appeal: There are currently well
over 30 games that I am planning to contribute to
the Kniziathon. Obviously, the more games the
better, so if people are able to lend copies of
Knizia games that are not on the list (and, even
better, hang around and teach them), I'd be very
Let there be beer!
Once again, the Derventio brewery will be
providing a selection of ales that look (and taste)
suspiciously similar to the ales on offer last year.
Please note that the bar in the Garden Room will
only be manned until midnight but if you are a
resident you can still get a drink of the proper
stuff by going to the main bar and asking them to
serve you in what Smashy & Nicey would call a
"room service-mungous type way". This
means paying for the drinks by card or putting it on
your room bill.
Someone letting the side down
and ordering a soft drink instead of one of the
available ales (see the boxes behind the barman)
The Bring & Buy
games room will take place again across the road at the
This year I will once again have sheets
printed with unique game ID numbers on
them. They will be in a folder marked
Bank Statements (it's not a long story but it is a
dull one) located on the MidCon Registration
desk in the Garden Room.
Feel free to complete these and then grab the
requisite number of post-it notes of
the correct colour that should
also be located on the registration desk, and
transfer the relevant info (game ID, selling price)
from the sheet to the post-it notes; the post-it
notes should then be affixed to the games, which you
then bring along during the sellers only phase.
We have a Boardgamegeek guild
In fact, for all I know, we have two (see
Facebook entry, below).
If we'd created the guild 42 guilds earlier we
could have got the coveted 1830 number for our
guild, but as it is, the URL is: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/guild/1872
Please join the guild because currently I am
Nobby No-Mates and the only guild member.
The guild has a calendar - just one entry on it
at the moment - plus a forum (empty) and an images
Take two Facebooks into the shower?
It seems I was a off the mark with my previous
comments about us not having a Facebook page. I
might have known that young Dave Simpson had already
set one up. Unfortunately, I only found out after I
had also set up a Facebook page.
So, now we have two. We are the Janus of the
The original and much more populated page is here
and has been for yonks.
The new MidCon
Facebook page, which had better become a page
dedicated to the Bring & Buy games sale, is: www.facebook.com/midcongames
There is not a lot on it at the moment,
and nothing that is not already on this
web site but that may change at some point
in the near future. We may even get around
to publicising it at some point.
Next stop, Witter (sic)
We still have some T-shirts on the
Settlers theme, in various colours. If memory serves we were banging
these out for £12 a pop. E-mail us (via the
Queries button on the left) if you want one.
The T-shirt design is below.
Advance orders with Spirit Games
Spirit Games will once
again be running the official games stall.
If any you have any specific games you'd
like to buy from him - including those
released at this year's Essen games
tournament - phone him on 01283 511293 or
him to see whether they have it in stock
and, if they do, he will put it to one
side and then bring it along to the