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Posted on Jul 29, 2010 in Boardgames

Historicon 2010 Road Report

By Gerald D. Swick

Earlier this month, the Armchair General/Weider History Group Web crew hit the road to Historicon, the largest historical miniatures gaming convention in North America. This was the first year the con was held at the Valley Forge Convention Center at King of Prussia near Philadelphia, after many years in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and everyone was wondering how well things would work in the new venue.

Overall, they worked pretty darn well. Any time a con moves to a new site there are problems with "Where the heck is (the game I’m looking for, the speaker I want to hear, the food, the bar, etc), and this one was no different. The sponsor, Historical Miniatures Gaming Society (HMGS), had staffers writing down complaints and suggestions to straighten out some of those problems next year.

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Attendance was down a bit from last year, as usually happens the first year an event moves to a new site, and the dates, July 8 – 11, came on the heels of the 4th of July weekend, which may have affected attendance.

The gaming areas were well-lit, the dealers hall was larger, and after a few treks from one hotel to the other via a loooong hallway, I found it was pretty easy to figure out how to get around. The parking situation was much better than at the old venue.

On the downside, a lot of attendees had trouble finding the rooms where we were sponsoring speakers. Better site maps for next year was among the suggestions mentioned above.

Col. (ret) Jerry Morelock, ACG Editor in ChiefAmong the speakers we sponsored was Armchair General Editor-in-Chief Col. (ret.) Jerry Morelock, and a number of fans took the opportunity to talk with him about the magazine.

Author Jay Wertz—you’ve seen his articles on our ACG, HistoryNet and GreatHistory sites—gave three presentations related to the new book series that Weider will debut later this year: War Stories: World War II Firsthand. The series will intersperse historic narrative with interviews Jay has conducted with an incredible number of veterans from many countries. Stay tuned.

Osprey Publishing sponsored Capt. Dale Dye, whose Warriors, Inc., has provided historical consulting and military advice on Band of Brothers, The Pacific, and just about every film involving combat, historical or science fiction, since Platoon. He kept a spillover crowd laughing with his observations on Hollywood filmmaking.

Below are some photos we came back with from Historicon; the last set is of historic sites within 90 minutes drive of the convention center. If you’d like to see more of what gamemasters and others are saying about the new venue, check out the bulletin boards on The Miniatures Page by clicking this link and typing Historicon into the search box.

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