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General Forge Forums => Conventions => Topic started by: Paul Czege on August 23, 2007, 01:02:41 PM

Title: canned heat
Post by: Paul Czege on August 23, 2007, 01:02:41 PM
At Gen Con The Ashcan Front moved 265 ashcans for feedback and playtesting, across 11 different games. A daily break-down:

Thursday: 86
Friday: 40
Saturday: 50
Sunday: 89

Friday was slow purchase-wise, as expected, and felt slow traffic-wise. Saturday was surprisingly slow, as other booths have reported. But overall, Gen Con broke open the can! And I'm seeing great post-convention momentum for playtesting and feedback. I can't wait to see how the next few months play out for these games. I couldn't be more geeked.


Title: Re: canned heat
Post by: Matt Gwinn on August 27, 2007, 08:08:13 AM
That's good to hear Paul.  How many of those were Acts of Evil ashcans?

By the way, "canned heat" is a wrestling term which refers to an artificial crowd respose piped in through the sound system.

Title: Re: canned heat
Post by: Paul Czege on August 29, 2007, 05:06:58 AM
Hey Matt,

41 total copies of Acts of Evil across the four days.

I think wrestling adopted the term from what everyone calls this (


Title: Re: canned heat
Post by: Gregor Hutton on August 29, 2007, 05:26:40 AM
Those are really strong numbers and would put the "average" ashcan from the Ashcan Front into the top 25 sellers on the IPR booth for sure.

Just looking at the numbers: Acts of Evil selling 41 means the other 10 books average just over 22 books each.

I sold 28 books on the IPR booth and I think that put me at about 13th equal.

I think that is clear success in the initial stage. It shows that people will buy these books, despite what naysayers may think. I also felt that they all had high quality in their presentation.

I'm guessing success in next stage is getting play out of these ashcans and worthwhile feedback to the designers. Good luck with that.

Title: Re: canned heat
Post by: Paul Czege on August 29, 2007, 06:27:31 AM
Hey Matt, Gregor,

To be clear, my measure of booth success for the various games isn't raw purchase numbers, but whether each game had enough purchases that it's likely to get the feedback it needs.

So, games like Acts of Evil and Galactic that require a greater commitment because they need some mechanics validated over multiple sessions of play, I'd want to see purchased in greater numbers. Because I think it'll take a lot more copies of these games to provoke the multi-session playtests they need. But for games that play in a single evening, or less, I expect playtesting and feedback per copy purchased will be a lot higher.

And by those measures I'm very very pleased with ashcan purchases across all the games. The games that needed a double handful of purchases got that, and the games that needed more got that.