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Liddlink

Nerf Convention????

So I was sat in a maths lesson, and I started thinking about having a Nerf Convention. Like a comic con for blasters. I mean, we set up all these wars, but it would be a cool experience for the UK Nerf community. So... Could we do this??? Would we be sued by Nerf? Can we band together to make a Nerf Convention?

This post was written on a whim but oh well 😜
Fox

Why would Nerf sue anyone for setting up an event that basically encouraged people to buy their product?
Shady-daze

I hate to say it but I don't think such an event would be financially viable, you might be able to get a stall at a con devoted to Nerf if you wanted to do that. Though really wars are the cons of Nerf, you get to share your interest with others in the same hobby, show off projects you've been working on and ultimately have fun.

The only example to mind of a nerfing cons was D.A.R.T con a few months back now but that was after a big HvZ event in the US. Hasbro will be setting up Hasbro con next year (though this may just be a way for them to avoid needing to attend NY and London Toy Fairs).
UKNerfWar

Shady-daze wrote:
... Hasbro will be setting up Hasbro con next year (though this may just be a way for them to avoid needing to attend NY and London Toy Fairs).


Is this actually confirmed? Last I heard this was just speculation based on the fact Hasbro had registered the domain?

There is a plan to host a huuuuuuge war in the Midlands at some point. We need to get all the legal a sorted first but you can rest assured it will be a thing one day. This could potentially double as a convention. It all depends on how many people are willing to travel.
Franksie

Dart con happened before HvZ in Missouri this year - it's been done
bigal123

I attend a lot of comic cons as a trader and a punter (cosplayer) and I sell mainly Nerf goodies on my stall ( check my page in my signature below if you wish) and I don't think there would be much if a viable market for a foam only type convention. As others have said I think the wars are the place for this. Example, at GUN 11 at the weekend just there we had loads of Britnerf members from all over coming together for the day and it was great to see everyone's gear and chat about it all and I think the proposed 'battle of Britain' event would probably be the Britnerf version of a foam Con. I know people are working hard behind the scenes to try organise this so fingers crossed as I think it would be a fantastic event.
Fox

UKNerfWar wrote:
It all depends on how many people are willing to travel.


I've organised and attended "big" events in other spheres and found that people's willingness to travel is in direct proportion to what incentive you offer them. If you make it as easy and as cheap for them to attend as possible, and offer an experience that they can't get elsewhere, or better yet, a variety of experiences, they'll come. If you don't, they won't.

For example, if you can assure me that there's going to be two days of non-stop nerfing fun, plentiful decent accommodation at a reasonable price, food available on site or self-catering facilities, indoor and outdoor games of different types with obstacles and a fort, a bar with decent beer, stalls selling a wide range of products, and a cool t-shirt for attendees, then it might be worth my 400 mile round trip. Make it family friendly and I'll bring my son too.

If you tell me you've got a big muddy field, there are some B+Bs somewhere in the area and a McDonalds at the motorway services 3 miles away, but there'll be a portaloo on site, and 15 blokes from <insert town here> have promised they'll try and come to make up numbers if they can get the minibus working in time, I probably won't bother.
Mr.Crane

The Nerf community is growing pretty rapidly and at some point in the future a con may be a viable option, but right now you may as well attend some of the bigger Nerf events - you'd get to see the same people attending anyway!
old_man_nerf

Sounds like 'fox' needs to be on the organising committee to ensure his requirements are met!
Boff

Mr Fox's ideas are fantastic (see what I did there? No? OK, I'll see myself out) and have got the wheels in my brain turning again. We are still working on the Battle of Britain as an idea - just as UKNW said we've got some legal hurdles to clear first.

It would be pretty simple to bring the BSUK stall up and offer a place to buy stuff in person as well as possibly a few sneak previews and technology demonstrations. We're getting pretty well practised at selling in person now! Very Happy
blindgeekuk

I like the concept of a UK Nerf Convention, and theres possibly enough active players now to consider the proposed Battle of Britnerf (since we know theres a couple of foreigners interested in coming over to it) as a test bed...

But one of the things for con for me as part of the RPG scene is a) stalls, b) talks and c) demos

So...

a) Stalls
As I see it, we have a couple of core sellers in the UK - Blastersmiths, Atch, BigAl's awesome paint jobs, and UKNerfWar. Compare that to the USA dart con, where all the big 3d print companies were there. We could invite Blasterparts I suppose. but for rpg cons, part of the appeal is them selling stuff that isn't on the website, and clawing through tubs of rare books and adventure modules. I'm not sure you'd get anything similar with Nerf.

b) Talks
I've attended many an excellent talk from luminaries in the RPG world, Ian Livingstone and Steve Jackson, John Kovalich, Dave Allsop, etc. People who have helped shape the history of that hobby. Nerf doesn't have that rich history, and while hearing Boff talk about founded bUZAN would be cool, I can't see there being enough to talk about that we've not heard before, or that couldn't be told around a campfire once it gets late and we have a sneaky beer...

c) Demos
RPG cons are full of upcoming companies giving quick and/or indepth demos of their latest ideas. Hell, I've run plenty of those demos... But in Nerf? Point and shoot... At best, you could get some police tactics guys to demo room clearance drills?

So for me, the idea of a uk Nerf convention is a no go. I'd rather spend the time having fun at a war, meeting players from all around the UK, and checking out awesome blaster mods, and cool tactical rigs... GuN on a bigger scale basically.

Fox, you've highlighted one of the big problems, expectations. What you've suggested you want is something I would hate, as all i'm seeing in your description is lots and lots of costs. The muddy field with mates on the other hand, that is my kind of thing.
OldNoob

With the size of the community and the tiny resources we have available I think the best you should all be hoping for is a really well run 2 day event with tons of games, some good natured rivalry between gruff Northerners and soft Southerners, plus plenty of time to socialise.
I for one won't be giving talks or hawking anything because I will be too busy shooting darts and running games!
The draft venues are all family friendly with a good basic standard of facilities, we have the required contacts for some extras.
I would welcome anyone who wants to help organise, we have the legal stuff to sort out first. That is in hand as much as possible, given that none of us are full timers.
Franksie

Given that the venue is likely to be a central and I'm one of the resident no man's landers I'm happy to help organise things
FDT

I'd mentioned to someone a while ago about Team FDT venturing South for a kind of "roadshow" weekend.

However, if we picked a venue that could host both indoor and outdoor wars I'd be happy to bring the FDT gear down to use indoors. Very flexible cover as can be seen here:

http://www.foamdartthunder.com/parties/

I have public liability insurance to run Nerf if that also helps. Happy to be involved in any discussions/planning. Whilst I'd enjoy some Nerfing myself I'm always happy to referee.
Rab

Yeah, id be up for some of that.

In the meantime, if a cross border force of english nerfers were ever to make it up to one of the skatepark events , id be more than happy to help with something else either before or the day after to make it worth the trip.
Franksie

The English Discord contingent are up for an incursion north of the border next year
Dazzle740

it was mentioned at the last GuN about getting a group of the core players and venturing up north. I'm sure it's something we could finalize next year perhaps.
Get some fixed numbers then perhaps group together to cover the cost of transport for us all to travel in.

I also love the idea of a Battle of Britain Nerf event.
Rab

An invasion party! I love it 😎

The zone 74 venue in East Kilbride is straight up the M6 and looks to have decent rail links. Theres also a premier inn (or something similar) just along the road.

Just so you know though, you'll get Rekt! 😈

EDIT
I'm pretty sure we could return the favour and make a trip south, in fact my lot were saying they'd love to go to a GuN after watching jolts latest vid.😊
MarcusH

Conventions are an interesting beast. I'm a regular of a large UK convention in a different sphere entirely but the basics are the same.

1- Venue. A field in the middle of nowhere that's nowhere near train and car links isn't great ( Although it's a shame ON never got that ex bunker in the middle of nowhere for a war Razz) I'd guess like most cons you are looking Midlands area .

2- Panels. All cons have them. I think there is definitely scope for Nerf related panels , although stuff like internal modding would take a bit of jiggery-pokery to figure out how that could take a form that is suitable for panels.

3- Dealers! . Come and spend bucketloads of money on stuff you never knew you needed until you saw it! /S . Oh and UKNW will probably hug people.

And obviously you are mainly there to fling foam.

Sadly I've moved away from the hobby post uni , but I'll happily sling ideas around all day.

Marcus
FDT

Rab wrote:
An invasion party! I love it 😎

The zone 74 venue in East Kilbride is straight up the M6 and looks to have decent rail links. Theres also a premier inn (or something similar) just along the road.



This would be a better venue than TP for a big indoor war in Scotland. I could ask about hiring it out outwith the regular FDT schedule for a private Britnerf event.
UKNerfWar

MarcusH wrote:
...Oh and UKNW will probably hug people.


This is a given. A warning to anyone who doesn't like physical contact, I get 'handsy' when drunk... and also when sober.

A conventional convention (...?) format wouldn't work and to be honest, would be a bit shit. Nobody would really be interested in a seminar on modding or painting, not when there are games to be played. Similarly traders would rather be shooting people so having stalls might be a bit overkill.

A really big war however would be awesome. Anyone with stuff to sell could have a table in a hall/gazebo to be browsed at leisure. The main focus of the day would be games and anybody seeking advice or help could do so after a pint at the end of the day or even between games.

I think we need to be honest with ourselves and realise that any major event we set up will most likely be in a field in a large campsite, hopefully with accommodation and showers. This is the only way we will be able to keep the entry fee reasonable. Anybody with ideas of hiring a sports hall or similar for a weekend is dreaming (unless of course, they own said sports hall or can guarantee 100 players)
Liddlink

]I honestly didn't think this post would get this much feedback. You guys at Britnerf are awesome  Very Happy
Northwind

If you look at gaming cons, they can be very small and still viable- you don't need to be thinking about big events and budgets, it could be a function suite in a hotel or similar. That brings it round to the question of what/who it's for- do you want a big turnout or are you happy to serve a small passionate crowd. Is the job to grow the hobby or to work with who you already have.

(this is always a tightrope- I used to organise motorbike rideouts, there was always a feeling that we should be growing, getting bigger and better but actually the best number was about 6-8 and most rides ended up cumbersomely large. But if I'd run for 6-8 then losing 1 or 2 members threatens the whole thing. Basically what I'm saying is, know what it is that you want to do.)

The downside of the small, enthusiast event is that it's got such limited appeal. But the benefit is that it serves that group well. A stall at a con doesn't serve the mad obsessives as well but you're more likely to get new interest.

None of this is instead of a war, it's just a different part of the hobby and might appeal to different people. Kind of like the difference between a car show and a cruise.
OldNoob

On thechat we discussed mod parties, which are usually small gatherings without a war attached, at which technical skills and info get swapped and you can meet other modders. I think these could fill the rideout niche, especially in winter. Again, venue requirements are small.
Justajolt

I think a convention with some games modding parties etc sounds like a tonne of fun. I'd be happy even if it were just a day or two of decent gaming, like ON said!
UK Foam

I like the sound of this convention/mod party?

Is anyone planning on actually hosting this?

EDIT

Please read the post properly before simply adding another already answered question to the bottom. Both these are clearly answered in the thread. This is not redditt. ON


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