Now I'll be the first to admit that I'm a sucker for a good game... that and martial arts films... and Star Wars... and Flaming Hot Cheetos con limón... But to get back to the first one, I am an avid gamer. So it's no surprise that when I had heard The Laughing Moon Con was not only about sci-fi, fantasy, storytelling, and comics, but also predominantly about gaming, I was in!
Oh sure, some might say there are a great deal of other gaming conventions out there, but when there's one happening in my own backyard, I have no choice but to go.
Walking into the scene I was greeted by the man behind the con himself, Todd VanHooser. Todd is not only a recognized teacher winning the Teacher of the Year Award for the year of 2006-07, but an author. His works, The Laughing Moon Chronicles, were part of the main focus of the convention. I recommend checking out his site for more info on the series.
Though the convention started at 11am, we (Andrew, his wife and I) arrived after three, because we're cool like that... and I had just got off work. We were limited on time so we had to act fast and efficiently. So like grown men with un-medicated A.D.D. we fanned the floor for games salivating for die rolls and experience points.
Doom!, Dutch Blitz, Adventures Under the Laughing Moon, Dixit, and Zombie Dice (A personal favorite I might add) along with many other games to see covered the tables all around. We quickly jumped into a game of Bohnanza. Oh yes, it's a bean planting card game... and I slaughtered the table with my bean powered awesomeness! The guys running the table, now humbled by my newly discovered magnificent beany-ness, gave me a card inviting me to the Arizona based gaming convention RinCon 10 probably as a form of self defense.
And just when I though this could not get any better, the belly dancing began. Now I'll be the first to admit I'm not entirely familiar with The Laughing Moon Chronicles, nor with The Laughing Moon Girls, but you will hear no complaints from me about the show...
No seriously, they were very good dancers...
Oh come on, I'm allowed to appreciate art. I'm married, not dead.
So as this was a convention that not only had gaming, but many other attributes I had mentioned earlier. I was particularly interested in the Japanimation Club. These were a group of students who were doing commission art for donations in an effort to go to Saboten Con in October. One of the founders, Alex Will, explained to me the club's purpose was to bring awareness of Japanese culture to other high school students with goals in mind like putting together a cosplay group for cons. Andrew bought a drawing of a favorite character called "Gir" while I commissioned their artist, Brenda Lemieux to draw a Clockwork Ninja (You know...just to be random). Unfortunately I wasn't around to see the final picture, so as soon as it is sent to me I'll have it posted onto the site.
Also there, I met with a Joshua Scott who was displaying a few custom built post-apocalyptic prop guns and a rather impressive hand made Master Chief helmet. Watch his Youtube Channel where he's posting the progress with his armor along with a few machinima films he'd made. Be sure to check out his website here.
And finally, before I was dragged away for a previous engagement I was given a glimpse into a new web series in development from Atlantis Legend Entertainment and Laughing Moon Productions called Lafington. You can see the trailer online right now titled Every Town has a Story. I can see a world of potential here and I hope the rest of the internet community welcomes this series with open arms.
Unfortunately I was not able to stay for the full event so I missed many of the other appearances that had come later (Or earlier) in the day such as: The 501st, The Arizona Avengers, KITT, and The A-Team Van. But for what is was able to see and do, I admit it was very fun and I hope to see this become an annual event so it can grow.
Thank you, Todd VanHooser for making this convention possible, and thank you to everyone who contributed to a great convention.
Richard Wilcox Writes and Co-Produces for Clockwork Ninja Films.