I'm thinking hard about going to Gen-Con this year in Indianopolis. I've been dreaming about going since I used to daydream about the program that Dragon magazine published every year. I've alienated my wife by turning three of my kids into Gamers and have convinced them and myself that a weekend trip is the way to go. Some questions:
Is it too overcrowded to enjoy? Will I be standing in line all day to play one round of Settlers or is it big enough to survive the crowds? I stopped attending New York Comic Con because the crowds were too much. I'm not niave but I need some idea what I'm walking into.
Money is always at question. I'm underemployed down in the AC casinos. After 17 years of management I'm down in the trenches but I am in a tipped position. Meaning I can work my skirt ( figureatively ) and bank away hopefully $2,000 by August and not interfere with the family's budget. Hotel and food for two nights will go for $500+ total, I'm driving 13 hours from Jersey so $500+ for gas and tolls for summer prices. The passes cost me 70 each so $300. That leaves me possibly $500 for swag. The question is: Am I paying separate entry for different events? Are there premium Sponsor events that will require extra admission? Can I play a game while my kids play in another over the way. They are old enough to circulate on their own so I dont have them on a leash.
How much work reserving spots in game sessions can I actually do beforehand? I'm a fairly organized guy and will map out the days ( Sat and Sunday) as much as possible to get the bang out of my buck. I'm not going to Gen-Con again, it took me 30 years to get there. Can I do it on that kind of budget or doing it right will be too much? I cannot do the VIP route, that prices me out but I wonder if planning ahead will make the difference or not?
Looking for anybody who's done Gen-Con. Is the experience worth the hassle or does the experience just become the hassle? I'm not taking three teenagers out there to walk around in a circle and spend a grand doing it. Any insight,opinion and/or pointers is appreciated. Collectively this community knows alot. I want to tap into to improve my potential Gen-Con experience.