asa vs. gencon
After going to ASA last weekend, I spent a few days at GenCon – the convention for board games, computer games, and role playing games. Yes, that makes me as an extremely nerdy guy, but I’m comfortable with my identity! Here are some comparisons; add your own in the comments.
- ASA: People study socially marginal groups. GenCon: Convention is a socially marginal group.
- ASA: People actively looking for jobs. GenCon: Some folks gave up on the job thing a long time ago…
- ASA: People paid to discuss alternate identities. GenCon: People pay to be the alternate identity.
- ASA: People often disappointed when they end up at the round tables. GenCon: People rush to make the round tables – and all panel proposals accepted!
- ASA: People look at your name tag to see what school you are from. GenCon: People look at your tags to see which Amazonian kingdom you are from.
- ASA: Strange people obssessed with probability distributions and esoteric tables. GenCon: Strange people obssessed with probability distributions and esoteric tables.
- ASA: Your parents don’t understand what you do for a living. GenCon: Your parents don’t understand your hobby and they’ve given you a comic showing how role playing games lead to Satanism.
- ASA: Special tour of the host city. GenCon: Special tour of the life size dungeon.
Bonus round: Northwestern sociologist Gary Alan Fine wrote a book on gamers called Shared Fantasy: Role Playing Games as Social Worlds. David Waldron discusses the D&D/Satan issue in Role-playing Games and the Christian Right: Community Formation in Response to a Moral Panic, published in The Journal of Religion and Popular Culture.