Octopus's Garden

Issue Eighty

29th May 2013

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HELLO, good evening and welcome to Octopus's Garden, the subzeen with its very own Railway Rivals game. It's a subzeen to Jim Burgess' The Abyssinian Prince, which is now a subzeen to Douglas Kent's Eternal Sunshine. Produced by Peter Sullivan peter@burdonvale.co.uk. It's also available on the web at http://www.burdonvale.co.uk/octopus/.


During the many years it spent at the University of Birmingham, Manorcon must have been hosted in just about every sizable Hall of Residence on the campus. Of course, the total is inflated by the fact that several of the Halls of Residence conspired to change their names in-between visits. For instance, the admirably-descriptive High Hall became Chamberlain Hall (not necessarily a very auspicious name when it comes to the subject of international diplomacy). And Wyddrington Hall and Lake Hall (in reality, two wings of the same building; one for boys, and one for girls) became Shackleton Hall after one particular refurbishment.

By contrast, since the move to the University of Leicester in 2007, the convention has settled down into Stamford Hall. But, even if you can take the wanderin' star out of the convention, you can't take the convention out of the wanderin' star. (I have no idead what that last sentence is meant to mean, by the way.) So, for 2013, Manorcon is crossing the road to John Foster hall, but still part of the same campus site. The new venue has several pluses, from the point of view of hardened gamers. With a larger dining room, the convention will have more of a central focus, with less tendency for smaller groups to break off across the site. (Something that always makes finding people – whether to play games with, or more generally – more of a challenge.) And the fact that the bar area will be in the main building again will mean that attendees will no longer have to brave the dark of the night (or, even worse, unseasonable July rain) to quench their thirst.

Other than that, Manorcon 31 will continue to be a gentle evolution, building on the pluses of its previous 30 incarnations and hopefully discarding some of the minuses. (One of the benefits of having an on-going event like this is the ability to learn what works and what doesn't, over time.) Full details can be found on the Manorcon website, along with the traditional booking form/flyer. (Manorcon was, I believe, one of the first games conventions in the world to have its own internet presence, although modesty forbids me from highlighting who was responsible for this innovation.)

Round 12 — "Hannibal Hamlin"

Railway Rivals Map FR

No Builds

Scores on the Doors:

Company B/fwd 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 Final
NERTZ 221 4   14 16   6 14 275
LOSER 155 0 23   1 14     193
FRAK IT 228 2 1 11   13 16   271
FWOGGIE 269   5 7   3 7   291
RENAISSANCE 257 24 1 -2 3   1 16 300
Totals 1,130 30 30 30 20 30 30 30 1,330

GENEVA: Congratulations to Robin on the win, and many thanks to the rest of you for playing. The deadline for Game-End Statements is SATURDAY, 22nd JUNE, 2013 to Peter Sullivan, peter@burdonvale.co.uk

That was Octopus's Garden #80, Startling Press production number 367.

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