March signifies to me the coming of Convention Season! I have not been to the large shows like HistoriCon, GenCon or AdeptiCon, but I do attend the shows on the local gaming scene. One of my favorite conventions is Hotlead. This event is in Stratford, Ontario, Canada, but is big enough that it is worth a look if you live in Buffalo (New York), Michigan or Ontario. The event runs March 29 to 31. Every year this show grows more and more. To me, it is a big show with a small show feel. Attendance is often north of 300 people.
One of the biggest draws out to the event is the enormous Bring and Buy Table. A portion of all sales gets donated to charity and the seller gets the rest. The table is manned by staff so you can go and play games while your items sell. For buyers, the items on the table are generally priced to go, which makes for a mad dash once sales start.
Vendors make another strong draw to the event (it looks like the have 12 or so lined up for this year). There are some tournaments going too, but the biggest draw for me is participation games of all sorts. This is where I like to try out new rule sets that I may have never even heard of before.
Participation Games are like large Demo Games for many players. By nature, many of these games are historical, but other games enter the mix too. I already selected the games that I hope to play at Hotlead 2019, and this year they are trying out pre-registration for games for the first time ever. I will be running a game of Frostgrave if you want to look me up.
The table quality varies by the Game Master, but they are generally very good. Below are some samples of tables from Hotlead 2018.
Wrapping it up…
Hopefully you enjoyed this quick overview article of Hotlead. If you are in the area, it is well worth checking this event out. It is my favorite of the ones on my local scene. If you are interested in more about this event, check out my 2018 and 2017 Convention reports of the event. I also have a page listing all Ontario (Canada) conventions of which I know.
Thanks for reading and until next time, Happy Gaming Everyone!!!
Again, aside from writing great gaming related articles, I am also working on compiling a list of all Miniature Gaming Conventions in Ontario (Canada). If you are in Ontario, this list should be of interest to you!