What is a games convention?
A Games Convention is an organised gathering of people of all ages who wish to write and present games/events to those who want to play and participate in games/events. It is a chance for people to meet other like-minded people in a safe, creative and fun environment and play those games/events they like to play regularly or that they haven’t played before. Game conventions are often held in a public facility, such as a hall or school/university. Organisers endeavour to select a venue that is easily accessible by car and public transport, and runs the convention over two to four days.
What happens at Conquest games conventions?
Types of games/events run include:
- Freeforms (aka. Parlour LARP)
- Tabletop Roleplaying
- Miniatures (both gaming and painting)
- Board Games
- Card Games
- Multiplayer Video Games
- Demonstration Games of various kinds
- Special Events such as Trivia Contests and Costume Contests
- At Conquest there is also a Trader’s Hall where many different companies and groups sell various roleplaying, general game, fan and miniature related products.
We also have a Canteen that offers a wide variety of hot/cold food and drinks. Proceeds from the Canteen support the convention.
How can I get involved?
There are many different ways you can participate in a Conquest Games Convention. You can:
- Write and/or run a game/event as a Game Designer, or GM (aka Games Master) / DM (Dungeon Master).
- Come as a Player.
- Offer to be a Volunteer.
- Run a stall in the Trader’s Lane.
Please Note: If you have any special requirements, such as needing disabled access to the building, please Contact Us before the convention. This is so we can ensure you have what you need to enjoy the convention!
How is the convention organised?
Each day of the convention is divided into two to four blocks of three hours starting at 9.00am, 12:30pm, 4.00pm, and 7:30pm.
Each session is scheduled to run for two and a half hours from the start of that block, leaving either half an hour or a full hour between playing sessions. Breaks enable you to get from one game to the next, get something to eat/drink, or just socialise and catch your breath.
For legal/insurance purposes you need to register with Conquest in order to participate in any capacity. If you are playing in a timetabled game you must confirm your registration with each game/event organiser before the game/event is scheduled to commence. If you do not, the organiser may fill your place with someone else in order to be able to run it.
Please be aware that there is a chance you could miss out on a game or event due to a game/event being already filled, or being cancelled. Every effort will be made to book you into every game/event you wish to participate in. If you miss out on a game/s or event/s that you have registered and paid for, you can talk to us and we will find you a spot in another suitable game.
Attendees can pre-register for the convention and sign up for events they want to join. Pre-registering allows players the best chance of getting into preferred games/events and time slots; it allows event organisers to see how much demand there will be for their event; it allows the con-orgs a chance to plan for how much space will be required.
Please note: Pre-registration does not necessarily guarantee entry into particular events. Although every effort is made to enter you into the events you would like to play, events are sometimes cancelled, or over or under booked such that they cannot run.
How do I sign up for game sessions?
We are using Warhorn as our registration platform for upcoming conventions. Game sessions are open for a limited time to allow GMs to prepare their schedule.
If you are subscribed to notifications via this website, or follow us on social media, we will post out a notification when game sign ups are open.
You do not need to create an account on ‘www.conquest.asn.au’, but to view and modify your schedule you will need to sign up to Warhorn at ‘https://warhorn.net/’.
Why do I have to sign up on different websites?
Everyone who participates in Conquest in any capacity needs to be registered with the convention: Whether you’re playing, trading, or volunteering.
Depending on the situation, you may need to apply with the convention multiple times. For instance, we may have a separate system for registering for the convention and signing up for games. Unfortunately, these different systems cannot be set up to “talk to” one another. Furthermore, we lack the human resources to manually transfer and collate records between these systems.
Since not all people attending Conquest will be playing games, we need a record of all visitors in one, tidy place – this if for our legal/insurance purposes.
Do I have to pay to enter Conquest?
It’s free to enter the venue and look around at trader stalls. An entry fee is required if you want to participate in timetabled games and the board game library.
Some attendees may be granted free entry if they have opted to volunteer or GM for a majority of the weekend. We have a kind of honour system: You scratch our back by helping run or promote the convention, and we will reward you with a free pass. However, it doesn’t work the other way around. One may not play a game first, and then “pay off” with volunteering later – What’s to stop you from leaving after you’ve had your game?
Some may also be granted free entry to the convention to provide media coverage. The decision to hand out free passes is up to the discretion of Con-Orgs.
Do I have to pay to play games if I’m a GM or Volunteer?
If you are doing a combination of GM-ing (running a game), volunteering and/or playing you may not have to pay entry fees. This is determined on a case-by-case basis, however typically if you are volunteering 50% or more of your time on the day, then you will be granted free entry for the day. If you are unsure, please ask us (email@example.com). The Con-Orgs are happy to be flexible and work things out with you.
Why do we have to pay entry fees?
Although Conquest is a non-profit run by volunteers, we do have operating costs to cover; Such as venue hire, insurance, website hosting, and equipment. Any profits we make go towards funding the next convention, improving our online systems, and replacing old/consumed equipment. This is why we ask all game-playing participants for an entry fee.
Can I get a concession on my entry fee?
Yes, absolutely! If you have a current student card or Australian government-issued benefits card we are happy to help you out. Please present this to the convention staff at the time you are paying your fees in person.
Why can’t I use my card to pay at Conquest?
Unfortunately, due to our structure as non-profit incorporation it is difficult for us to acquire a card processing system. We have so far not been able to provide a system that works for our structure. If you have a suggestion that may work for us, please let us know.
Can my child attend Conquest?
Conquest is generally not suitable for young children. A reasonable level of independence and maturity is needed of players to meet financial and behavioural obligations. We try to provide sufficient information about each game/event so that you can judge its suitability. If you have any questions or concerns please contact us.
Please also note that we do not and cannot provide a child minding service. Children under 13 must be supervised at all times to ensure their safety and to prevent them from disturbing other convention attendees.
Parents/guardians must sign the registration form for attendees under 18 when first arriving at the convention.
Does your event have wheelchair access?
Yes. For our next event at Batman Royale, the building will be wheelchair accessible.
Why did Conquest stop running at Melbourne High/Swinburne?
Conquest had run conventions in schools in the past.
Unfortunately, since 2016, Melbourne High School could not continue to offer their building. The Conquest team made attempts to find a similar venue, however no school was able to make an offer.
For the conventions in 2016, 2017 and 2018 Conquest was hosted at Swinburne University as a joint event with the Swinburne Anime Club. At the end of 2018, the anime club disbanded. Thus there were no student clubs available to help host our event.
If you are associated with a school in Melbourne and would like to offer us a space to run future events, please get in touch. We would love to hear from you.
Who can I talk to if I have another question/problem?
If you’re a GM/DM/Game Writer and need help, please contact the GM schedule team at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have questions about volunteering please contact the volunteer admin at email@example.com