This past weekend I attended ToonCon 2017. For a full report of the weekend and all the games I played check out the previous post:
Tim's ToonCon 2017 Report
This post, however, is focusing in on the event that I ran Saturday evening - Faustus Furius: 3000!
Now Faustus Furius, is "a fast and furious, tongue in cheek table-top racing game based very loosely around the chariot races of the ancient world and adaptable to any racing situation". For this event I adapted it for racing JET BIKES! Late last year, shortly after I picked up Faustus Furius, I backed Ramshackle Games Jet Bike construction Kit Kickstarter and have been assembling and painting jet bikes since they arrived in May.
There was a lot of terrain and miniatures to haul to the convention. I almost didn't get out of my front gate in the morning!
Upon the appointed hour, six people turned up to play FF3K (from left to right: Pat, Chris, James, John, Gary, and Morgan) - all fine gentlemen and a totally fun group of guys to race jet bikes with! I'd set the limit at 8, but was very happy with six. It was the first time I'd played with that many players and eight might have been just enough to bog the game down a bit...
Now I believe in thoroughly play-testing a game before unleashing it upon unsuspecting participants at a convention. But I think it was Sun Tzu that said "the best laid plans never survive first contact with convention participants..." or... something like that.
The first player that went - I think it was James - really set the tone for the entire evening when he rolled his dice to see how many actions he had and before moving his bike asked "now, HOW do I attack another jet bike...?" I was quite surprised to see how very combative all the participants were throughout the game - not disappointed or anything, and there wasn't really any vicious maliciousness to it - it was all in the spirit of the game - but, like I was saying in the previous post, the people we meet at conventions have entirely different (not wrong, just very different) styles of plays than how we tend to play games at home.
I DID manage to convince them that it was not really in their best interests to NOT attack others in the starting line-up as the victim of said attacks could very easily crash into their attacker - setting everyone back...
So the first few shot out of the starting line-up.
By the end of the first turn, pretty much everyone was still in a nice neat line... except Morgan, who tucked in behind the line...? Perhaps he was drafting?
The next turn Gary's Purple 37 shot out in front of the group.
Others tried to follow, but Morgan went before the bikes in front of himself which meant he crashed into them from behind causing a short chain-reaction of collisions with Jame's and John's bikes. Morgan didn't actually crash, but spun out and ended up facing WRONG WAY!
Pat's Grease Lightening pulled ahead, followed by Chris' ToonCon Express. Gary's bike seems to have veered off-course (I'm guessing someone attacked him and his bike spun out of control - hard to remember details of how exactly things went down early in the race - thank goodness I took so many pictures!)
Morgan, John and James trying to get their jet bikes turned around and back in the race!
Pat's Grease Lightening still in the lead followed by Chris' ToonCon Express. Gary's managed to turn his bike around and John is in the process of doing so... but it looks like Morgan collided with the camera crew and rolled another spin out - turning him around AGAIN!?
Looks like someone either incited (or angered) the mob and some rowdy fans poured out onto the track!
Trying to sort out the chaos and confusion.
Grease Lightening still in the lead as everyone else seems to be spinning out of control trying desperately to get back in the race.
Grease Lightening rounding the first hill and James and Chris giving chase. Gary and John still trying to get back in the race and Morgan...?
I think he's still back in the town... trying to get his bike started again...
Morgan's bike getting started. Very slowly. In the wrong direction.
Pat's Grease Lightening almost half done his first lap!
John's bike punching it, trying to get back into it.
Okay, now THIS is starting to look like a jet bike race - everyone facing in the right direction and going forward!
And then Morgan decided to say "Screw it" and cut the course in an attempt to get back in the game!
Around this time James posted a live video of the action to Facebook...
Chris' ToonCon Express caught up to Pat's Grease Lightning... and crashed into him! Pats jet bike crashed and The ToonCon Express spun out!
James' bike then slipped through the carnage to take the lead! Meanwhile Morgan's bike was still slipping through the ruins on the edge of town to sneak back into the race.
Nothing to see here!
Pat got his bike up and running again quickly, but Chris couldn't seem to be able to bring his bike under control and went careening off towards the table edge!?
Pat would not suffer anyone taking the lead and promptly crashed into James bike!
John and Gary's bike trying to dodge around the wreckage of James and Pat's, while Chris' still heading out to towards the desert beyond the table...
John sneaks into the lead while Morgan comes out of the wilderness, Pat gets his bike going again, and Gary gives chase. It also looks like Chris managed to get his bike turned around and is heading back towards the race course.
All of a sudden it was looking like a race again...
...and then bikes were flying every which way attacking and trying to dodge each other. Morgan got turned around again after colliding with some a mob of unruly fans!
John making a very precise maneuver.
and then Chris decided to cut the course. Morgan trying to bring his bike about again while everyone else was steering their bikes back into town.
John's googly-eyed love bug in the lead as they return to the town.
My son Finnegan has been playing Small World and found it very difficult to concentrate on his game when he could hear us all laughing and shouting. As soon as he was done he rushed over to join us again.
You can also see John is wearing the medal representing "The People's Favourite" - rolling three successes grants you the title and allows you to dodge a single collision later in the game. While John held it for a while, Pat scooped it from him and made good use of it.
John's "Love Bug" still in the lead as they re-enter the town.
More collisions as the bikes got a bit bottle-necked at the edge of town.
Which gave John some time to steal ahead a bit.
John starting to build up his lead as the others try to sort themselves out.
Other bikes get going again as John nears the end of the first lap!
The bikes swoop through town to finish up their first lap. Morgan seems to be off course again...?
Morgan ended up having to leave so he parked his bike behind some buildings and dropped out of the race.
The rest of them just couldn't seem to get through town without a few more collisions and crashes.
Which gave John a pretty commanding lead.
Around this point Chris also parked his bike and dropped out as he had to take off.
I think at this point he actually started rolling less dice - so he couldn't possibly roll three failures and anger the mob and have them storm out onto the track in front of him!
Which ultimately slowed him some and allowed the others to slowly reel him in...
Halfway through his second lap and still way out ahead!
That couldn't last forever, however. Grease Lightning eventually caught up.
But John wasn't entirely above dirty tricks - he incited the mob to charge out onto the race course and block Grease Lightning!
And this is where Pat first made use of "The People's Favourite" and swooped straight on through the mob (which would have otherwise caused a collision).
And then he collided with John's bike... Pat's bike spun out and John's careened (or ricocheted?) to the right.
Gary had caught up by this point, but pat got his bike going again quickly and swooped back into the lead.
Somebody had thrown another mob in front of him, but for a second time he used "the People's Favourite" to swoop past his creeping fans!
Gary enraged the crowd... or... in this case some Riot Police...? I think they were trying to arrest him for a series of unpaid parking tickets in eleven systems...
Gary, not having the love of the crowd, just simply crashed into them.
Grease Lightning slipped past and into the lead again.
The others raced into the town to try and catch him!
Pat executed a death defying hard turn, narrowly avoiding a building and a couple of market stalls....
...and rocketed across the finish line for the win!
At this point I would have just called it, but the others were having so much fun and they wanted to fight it out for second place (or, First Loser, depending on how you want to look at it?)
Fighting for second place, of course, involved a few more collisions...
Jus two show off, Pat decided to start a victory lap. he started off by rolling three successes and, gaining "the People's Favourite" again, used it to swoop through another mob without crashing into any of them!
Gary's bike slipped out of the tangle of bikes in town and across the finish line second.
It seemed as if John was going to be third.
I think James decided if he couldn't be third, no one would and crashed into John's bike... and THAT's where I called it.
Congratulations to Pat and thanks to all that participated making a truly epic evening.
The game played really well. I think six should really be the upper limit for playing. Any more and there would have been a lot more waiting to go and the game would have been a lot longer (and there would have been a LOT MORE collisions). Things really sped up after Morgan and Chris dropped out.
Now... what to do for NEXT YEAR?!
If I run this again, I'll do a figure-eight loop for the course!