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But sometimes a rainy day, time with friends and family, or just childhood nostalgia moves us to bust out the tabletop variety.

Engagement designer, Stanford lecturer, and tabletop geek Chris Bennett gave me the inside scoop on Go Play Northwest.

Location: Indianapolis, IN Dates: August 17-20, 2017 Ticket price: – 0 Great for: Tabletop gaming, massive exhibitors’ hall shopping Photo by heath_bar (creative commons) Best be respecting one of the longest-running gaming conventions in North America.

It’s also a play on words since the origin of the convention focused on war games, and as you know, the original Geneva Convention is a series of war treaties. Location: Los Angeles, CA Dates: October 14-16, 2016 Ticket price: – 5 Great for: Learning how to design your own game, introspective panels, staying up late with friends to play lots of games Photo by jeriaska (creative commons) Some of the biggest games of the last five years started out as a little independent setup with big aspirations.

With the advent of mobile devices, it’s becoming easier than ever to self-publish your own games. Visit Indie Cade for a jam-packed weekend of game development education for all ages, a 10-game arcade tournament, the chance to try out 27 top independent games, and much more.

They’re a curated resource to see when the convention is happening and what’s worth seeing there. It’s definitely not a requirement to be a certifiable geek on a topic. Location: Seattle, WA Dates: TBA (likely Labor Day Weekend 2017, September 1-4) Ticket price: – 0 (Registration will likely open Spring 2017.

Check out the first in the series – a list of anime conventions! But in my experience of attending conventions for 14 years, you haven’t lived until you attend a convention. Check here.) Great for: Playing big-name games before they’re released, tabletop gaming, learning from industry pros Photo by Danosuke (creative commons) Who knew that a humble web comic about gamer life, borne from the creativity of two friends, would grow into the largest fan-operated gaming show for the public?

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