RarityGuide.com - http://www.rarityguide.com/articles
Baycon 2012 – 30th Anniversary – Day 2
By Douglas Shepard (Editor in Chief, RarityGuide.com)
Published on 05/29/2012
A series of articles covering Baycon 2012. This part covers Saturday May 26th. This includes an overview of Brandon Sanderson's panel on the Wheel of Time and some of the events of the day.

Baycon 2012 – 30th Anniversary – Day 2

When the day began there were a few things to get to. The first was to attend a panel on Video Game Evolution. After that there was some time to kill. Placing a few questions got an answer to the one question from yesterday that had no answer through, but it was not to come until much later in the day.

After the panel there was a lot to happen. First was getting better bearings on the convention itself and just taking in the flavor of it. Baycon offered a smaller and more intimate setting than most conventions that I have attended. I found it very easy find people to talk with over the course of the convention. More often than not I was in the Hospitality Suite talking with friends between panels. I learned a bit about how the ribbons worked at this time.

The ribbons were more earned than just given out. Numerous people throughout the convention would come with a stock of 100 to 200 plus ribbons. Those they would give out to people when they either did or said the right thing. One of the more common things here was to know the character and name them. There were other situations to earn ribbons as well. Some were given out by attending events, like the one with “BayKhaaan!”, given out for going to the D(r)ive-in Movie: “Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan” or “I'll be here all night, try the bacon” for going to the hospitality suite the first night. The rest tended to either be given out by asking people or just finding them around the convention. People easily can get a large chain of ribbons that can reach from the head to the knees.

With the first part of ribbons explained, it was time to get to another panel. This one was hosted by the Toastmasters and the guest writer of honor, Brandon Sanderson. He talked about his experiences being chosen to finish the Wheel of Time series and a lot of his thoughts on the matter. He had a good time on the panel and was encouraging of his host's questions.

After that, it was a good bit of wandering around. A dear friend of mine also got the answer to the rest of the ribbon question; “Where they came from.” Apparently, one of the higher-ups in convention operations started it accidentally. They had brought a few as a joke and added them onto their badge. It apparently caught on like wild-fire and the next year, many more people had ribbons and it just grew after that. From humble origins to a defining aspect of the convention. Interesting twist on things there.

With that answered, it was back to the Game Room. Here, I got around to some Magic: The Gathering. It was a while later that Sanderson came in and started the MTG tournament that was mentioned in the program. This was a draft style tournament using the new latest sets, Avacyn Restore and Dark Ascension.

The tournament itself was a simple affair. It was ultimately split between the casual and hardcore players. The hardcore were running Avacyn Restored while the casual were playing with Dark Ascenion. This split came in very handy as people could focus on either competition or just having fun.  Both sides of the tournament were fun to participate in and the split ensured that people were playing against others of similar skill.

After most of the tournament was wrapped up, Brandon pulled out a variant on MTG: Archenemy. This module for MTG has one person in play as the Archenemy, they have a special scheme deck. From this scheme deck, one card is drawn at the start of the main phase. When it is played, it cannot be countered and its effects are immediate. This can be anything from forcing the “heroes” (the other players) to discard or sacrifice, giving the archenemy another turn, additional land or a number of other nasty effects. Brandon got into the role with a diabolical voice and plenty of evil laughter. It was four on one but he got a great hand the first game and it was over before we had a second turn. He packed a powerful deck that was able to triumph over all of ours. Still, the second game had him get some luck, but not to the same degree. The fight started with the four of us again. He got one of the eldrazi, a massive creature from beyond the realms of reality, called, “It That Betrays.” This meant that anything that was sacrificed, which is forced by the creature's ability, changes permanently over to the Archenemy's control. While this was a much more valant struggle, coming down to a Ninja deck versus a vintage deck, we ultimately lost.

The night concluded at then as it was after midnight and we were all tired. Brandon signed a few cards and asked the players to do the same. The second day of Baycon had come to a conclusion.