Over Memorial Day weekend GameMats.Com participated as a vendor at KublaCon at the San Francisco Airport Hyatt Regency. We've gone to this and other game conventions for years as players but this was the first time for us as vendors.
KublaCon is a hobby gaming event that has been held on Memorial Day weekend for a very long time. 2017 was their 17th year as KublaCon. Previous to that (starting in 1996) this was a one day event called Manafest that was focused on CCG's. In 2001 Manafest merged with GameCon to become a four day all encompassing hobby gaming extravaganza and became KublaCon.
Every type of hobby gaming is represented at KublaCon - from board and card games, to all types of historical and fantasy/sci-fi miniatures games to RPG's to LARP and more.
We knew from attending the con as players in the past that this was a great event. Going as vendors really showed us how professional everyone is and how well organized and well run KublaCon is. We think this is also reflected in their steady growth year to year. Attendance at KublaCon was up by more than 10% this year to almost 3400. The SFO Hyatt where KublaCon takes place was completely sold out, as were a couple of other nearby hotels. KublaCon management and staff run a tight ship and that is reflected by the volunteer staff as well.
For GameMats as vendors this year KublaCon was excellent. We had Game Mats for sale and came very close to a sell out. We were showing actual production samples for all of our upcoming new Game Mat designs that are currently on pre-order. We also brought a few prototypes for our upcoming line of PrinTerrain 3D printable terrain and accessories for gamers to look at. We received loads of valuable feedback from gamers and we took copious notes. The feedback we received will definitely impact the queue order for upcoming new Game Mat designs after our current production cycle.
We love that KublaCon is a family friendly event. We really enjoyed talking to the kids and handing out treats and tiny 3D printed houses. It was extra fun to see Kubla himself leading a horde of tiny marauders around the convention on Saturday & Sunday. We made sure to have tribute (root beer barrels!) ready when the parade came by!
On a personal note, we got to meet Stefan Pokorny, the creator of Dwarven Forge! Stefan was personable and humble and spent a few minutes in our booth looking at our products and offering encouragement to us. This, from a fellow hobbyist who spent years passionately toiling away, perfecting his craft before "hitting it big" was a special moment for us that we'll never forget.
This year we provided one each of our Gamma Station and Purgatory 6 X 4 Game Mats for the KublaCon raffle. We also had a contest in our booth where folks could try to guess the number of mini carabiners in a big jar. Two people won $50 gift cards to GameMats.Com on Monday at the end of the convention. Look for us to do something like this at every con we attend (within the rules of what is allowed by each convention of course).
We also ran a contest in our booth. We gave away two $50 gift certificates to GameMats..com. Winners were drawn after the convention and notified of their gifts via email. You can look for us to do something similar at future events we choose to attend.
We've already informed KublaCon management that we plan to attend next year. We're already reviewing our experience at KublaCon 2017 and looking at ways we can improve. We'd also like to participate more so we'll be exploring options for hosting events or seminars in 2018.
We met a lot of great people at KublaCon. If you came by our booth, THANK YOU for stopping by and allowing us to show you our work. We loved chatting with you and we want to hear from you! Please feel free to drop us a line via email at firstname.lastname@example.org at any time. And again, thank you and we'll see you at KublaCon in 2018. KUBLAAAA!