The annual Gen Con event, the largest tabletop gaming convention in North America, celebrated its 20th year in Indianapolis with record-breaking attendance. This year’s edition was special for many reasons, not the least of which was the warm and welcoming environment the convention continually aims to foster.

The Geek Post met with over 100 game designers, artists, authors, cosplayers, and more during our five days in Indy. We will be showcasing many of these great folks in the weeks to come so make sure to keep an eye on social media or check back here often for those interviews. We wish we could mention them all here but that article would be very long, so keep an eye out, they all deserve their own articles!

Record-Breaking Attendance

This year, Gen Con proudly hosted over 70,000 unique attendees, setting an unprecedented attendance record. The event is not just about the numbers; it’s about the community that comes together, from the artists to the authors, gamers, cosplayers, and everyone in between. It’s a melting pot of creativity and fandom.

A Beacon of Inclusivity

The inclusive culture of Gen Con was a heartening sight with anti-harassment signs prominently displayed. Affinity groups like The Gaymers had a strong presence, featuring their own exclusive gaming room. The convention also championed BIPOC communities, emphasizing the importance of diversity within the gaming realm. Personal testimonies, such as those from my very own transgender child (they are 17) highlighted the safety and acceptance felt during the event, speaking volumes about the character and values of Gen Con.

Cosplay and Entertainment Extravaganza

Cosplay, always a hallmark of Gen Con, outdid itself this year. While every day witnessed outstanding displays of creativity and passion, Saturday’s costume parade was a treat to behold. The entertainment didn’t stop at cosplay – Mikey Mason’s comedic tunes had attendees rolling with laughter, and The Damsels of Dorkington’s risqué Renaissance tales were a hit. These were the two we were able to attend, we have heard many stories of many other entertainment events that make us wish we could be in multiple places at once.

Focusing on the Kids

The convention ensured there was something for everyone, including the younger generation. A dedicated kids’ area, replete with crafts and even a boffer sword-fighting zone, kept the little ones engaged and entertained.

Paizo and the Gaming Community

Paizo, a standout name in the gaming community, hosted a well-organized room dedicated to their Society games. It was a haven for all players, from novices to seasoned gamers. Especially engaging were the Pathfinder Academy games that catered to budding young gamers.

The biggest news out of Paizo is that a playtest is starting this summer for Starfinder 2nd Edition. They plan to make it fully compatible with Pathfinder 2E!

We got our hands on the new Harrow Deck as well for Pathfinder 2E and it is beautiful!

Buzz of the Convention: Disney Lorcana

The highlight for many was Ravensburger’s new release, Disney Lorcana. Lines began forming in the wee hours, indicating the immense anticipation surrounding this game. However, this also brought about some mixed feelings regarding congestion in the vendor’s area. There was a limited amount of product available for the release, and it was limited in how much each person could buy.

Generosity on Display

Gen Con’s charitable endeavors were successful, raising over $35,000 for its charity partners Indy Reads and Game Pathways this year, bringing the cumulative total to over $425,000 since 2003.

Two Decades in Indianapolis

Marking two decades in Indianapolis, Gen Con has announced its commitment to stay in the city until 2030 at the very least. This comes as a testament to the bond Gen Con has forged with Indianapolis over the years. David Hoppe, president of Gen Con, reiterated the organization’s commitment to enhancing attendee experiences and expressed enthusiasm about the future prospects of the partnership with the city.

This was a landmark year for Gen Con, one that combined nostalgia, record-breaking numbers, inclusivity, and of course, games. As regular attendees, we found this year’s convention to be unparalleled, both in terms of experiences and the connections we made.

Gen Con will grace Indianapolis again from August 1-4, 2024. We hope to see you there, celebrating the best of tabletop gaming culture!

For more detailed information and updates, visit the official Gen Con Website.

Note: Gen Con Logo used with permission from the Gen Con Sales & Marketing team. The Geek Post is in no way affiliated with Gen Con or anyone who works for or with Gen Con.