Justus Productions

Sculpy MACE 2017 Gamer Questionnaire Survery

Hey guys and gals,

Gaming Crafters of all kinds. Please take a moment of your day and complete this survey and submit it to Sculpey.

If you have any questions, please let Jeff Smith know. JustUs Productions wants to support these guys as much as they have supported MACE. We will be using the Sculpey products at MACE this year with Charles Wolfe as he demos some sculpting techniques.

Everyone who enters will be entered into a drawing for an 8 Pound Box of Super Sculpey

Thank You!


B-Movie Inspirations: Blood Creek

Blood Creek, previously known as Creek and Town Creek, is a horror film directed by the famous (and infamous) Joel Schumacher, starring Michael Fassbender,  Dominic Purcell, and Henry Cavill.  Where else are you going to get Magneto, Heat Wave and Superman in one movie.  Written by David Kajganich, the film apparently had a limited theatrical release in 2009. I came across it in my streaming options, and it was highly recommended by a friends.  Dominic Purcell and Henry Cavill play brothers on a mission of revenge who become trapped in a harrowing occult experiment dating back to the Third Reich.  Yes, Nazis, Occult and Zombies in the same movie.  I am all in!

I would not qualify this as a B-Movie as much as a “under the radar” movie with limited release/straight to video production.  It has a great premise, a decent execution and so much potential for sequels.

In 1936, a Nazi professor named Richard Wirth (Fassbender) is sent to the West Virginia, US to be hosted by the Wollners, a farming family of German emigrants. The Wollners believe him to be a visiting scholar, but Wirth turns out to be a Nazi occultist who seeks a Viking runestone buried on their property.  He demonstrates occultic power on some dead animals, raising briefly from the dead, indicating a more sinister plan once he has tapped the full power of the runestone under their house.

Fast forward to modern day, the movie introduces Evan Marshall (Cavill) as a tired and hard-working paramedic who works 12 hour shifts, takes care of his invalid angry father and the children of missing brother.  Through several well-shot and interestingly scripted scenes, we learn a few things important to the story.  First, it’s Halloween and there is going to be a lunar eclipse that evening.  Secondly, the brother – Victor (Purcell) – is a war vet who disappeared sometime ago during a camping trip in rural West Virginia.

One evening, Evan is surprised when Victor suddenly appears. Victor explains that he has escaped some mysterious captors, and they quickly prepare to return for vengeance. The brothers arm up and head to the farm to confront what we learn is the Wollners, who have barely aged since 1936.  When they arrive to exact revenge,  the Wollners tell the tale of Wirth and his intentions.  Back in 1936, when Wirth revealed his intentions of occultic evil, the family bravely takes it upon themselves to save the world from this evil and trap him in their basement.  Using occultic runes they learned from his books, they bind and contain him on the property and out of the house.  Through rituals that requires frequent human sacrifices, they have been feeding him victims over the decades. Linked to Wirth, the family survive through the decades, operating as both captors and servants to Wirth, who they keep weakened and at bay.

Wirth then gets out of the cellar and begins his terror.  Wirth is now a zombie-like figure with occultic symbols carved into his gray hairless skin.  It is revealed throughout the story that Wirth has a plan to eventually awaken his third eye, which will mark the pinnacle of his power.  The fact that its Halloween night and a lunar eclipse works in there somewhere too.  Wirth’s terror includes killing and then subsequently raising horses and dogs into crazed zombie animals, as well as a few victims (reminiscent of Evil Dead).  Lots of blood and gore follows until things begin to fall apart.

I am going to avoid any further spoilers, but needless to say this movie ends with a occultic bang that is very satisfying.  By the end we learn that SS leader Himmler sent other Nazi agents to different locations throughout West Virginia. Evan finds a map that was under the farm and discovers that others like Wirth are at other farms. While Victor returns home to his family, Evan heads out to the other farms to stop the other Nazis, obviously setting up for sequels.  However, it ends with Victor ominously returning to the Wollner farm, now burned down, standing over the runestone, perhaps implying he is tempted by it’s power.

Not only is a cool self-contained adventure, it is a setup for a great campaign.    I fully plan to steal from this, advancing this into the future for a sci-fi adventure.  Imagine finding runestones on an asteroid! I can easily see this as a horror RPG adventure for something like Call of Cthulhu.  A group of players stumble across a bloodied young girl in the woods, with her back all shredded and sign restraints on her wrists.  They investigate her tale to find an old farm house with runes all over it.  What is to follow is a night of horror and death that would drive any party insane.

I highly recommend watching this movie for its inspiration (although I realize I might have spoiled it some).  It is very much worth a watch.


B-Movie Inspirations: The Dungeonmaster (1984)

Also known as Ragewar: The Challenges Of Excalibrate, I found this movie in an old article about old awful 80s fantasy films.  And this one was pretty awful. although it had great potential.  The article included several movies I had already reviewed so I decided to give this one a chance.  My research found that it was somewhat inspired by Disney’s Tron, but only mildly.  The studio changed the movie’s name from Ragewar: The Challenges Of Excalibrate to The Dungeonmaster in part because of the popularity of D&D at the time.  So obviously, I had to review it for RPG inspirations.

The movie stars Jeffrey Byron from Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn fame, as Paul, a computer geek with interesting and rather visionary talents.  The movie starts out in the 80s modern world where we see some of his computer skills and talents.  It is implied that he was “experimented on” by someone, giving him some very unique abilities to connect, diagnose and communicate with computers.  Before there was wireless, touch screens and Google Glass, this guy could use his glasses and watch to wirelessly connect to his home computer, diagnose computer problems, and change traffic signals at will.

We are then introduced to his girlfriend, a dancer named Gwen.  She and his AI personal computer Cal (short for X-CaliBR8) fight a battle for Paul’s attention.  One night while they slept, something weird happens that the movie does not clearly explain.  Paul and Gwen are somehow teleported to a Hellish realm by a mysterious devil-like figure named Mestema (played by the great Richard Moll).  Somehow, Cal the computer is connected to this but it’s not really explained how.  I am pretty sure the subtext is that computers are of the devil, though.  Having worked in computers for nearly 25 years, I can safely say that is not far from the truth.

Mestema (I really hate that name for a villain) sees Paul as a new challenge.  Although not clear in the movie, some of the text on the internet say that Mestema is a dark sorcerer bored with defeating all things magic and sees technology as the new threat.  There is a lot devil and Satan references and symbolism throughout.  Mestema plans to send Paul against seven challenges and if successful, he wins Gwen.  If he loses, Gwen remains with Mestema.  Reminiscent of Hercules and his twelve labors, Paul faces off against various beings and situations armed only with a portable version of his X-CaliBR8 mounted on a bracer.

This is where the movie really falls apart, however.  The story actually had so much potential.  It would not have blown the budget if they just had a little more imagination.  Instead, they settled on Paul’s laser-shooting wristband for most every solution.  Each challenge was a separate story that maybe lasted 10 minutes, and was written by a different person. Bold move in my opinion but in the end, the story fell short.

The segments were:

In Ice Gallery written by Rosemarie Turko, Paul and Gwen are placed separately in a frozen gallery of “criminals” or denizens of hell.  They include Bloody Mary, Jack the Ripper, the werewolf, the mummy, a unnamed Samurai, a Zombie, King Louis and of  course, the worse of the all – Albert Einstein???  I guess, in the 80s, he was deemed evil or hell-worthy because of his contribution to the bomb.  None of this really makes sense but you roll with it.  I got stuck on the movie-monsters in Hell, but whatever.  Something like the Nightmares of Hell would have made more sense.

Gwen begins to freeze up while Paul is trying to find her and a way out.  Mestema proceeds to turn the heat up and of course, all the figures begin to thaw out.  The two find each other and have to find a way out.  The end solution is surprisingly not technological, however, and very stupid in the end. This is one of many examples of a lost opportunity in writing and storytelling.  I thought the whole point was for technology to overcome magic but instead, it’s just some mysterious crystal being held by the un-thawed Einstein (why was he still frozen?).  Somehow, Cal knows that Paul needs to just throw this ice crystal, and everyone wins!  Yay!  It’s just stupid.

Why not use technology to defeat each creature in more ways than just Ask Cal?  I realize it was supposed to be short but the end solution made no sense.  I suppose because the crystal was in the hands of a man of science, that it is a metaphor for science defeating magic but I found that very weak.  It could have been a book or something closely related to knowledge and science.  Let the light of knowledge destroy all your nightmares. Or something like that.  If you needed to cut something out, take out the whole aspect of Gwen freezing (we already know it’s cold) and instead add her figuring some aspect out of the mystery.  Instead of making her yet another damsel in distress, make her a equal partner with Paul in figuring this challenge out.

Demons of the Dead, written by John Buechler, had Paul appear alone in another realm of Hell, ruled by a puppet-effect demon.  Paul faces off with a couple of zombies and then meets the puppet demon, Ratspit.  Paul must face his own death, according to the demon puppet.  How does that work out?  Paul staring down his own zombie-self and saying “Meh.”   Again, stupid and it has nothing to do with technology defeating Mestema or magic.

A redeeming moment in this scene is the line uttered by Paul  “I reject your reality and substitute my own!”  (partially borrowed from a Dr. Who episode) and I think this gets to the point of the encounter.  Paul is supposed to die at the hands of Mestema, resulting in zombie-Paul, but Paul realizes it is only a single possibility of many and rejects that reality altogether.  Although fairly imaginative and cerebral, the execution of this encounter is really poorly done.  Facing one’s own death needs to be more dramatic and meaningful. I think, once again, lack of budget killed the potential in this scene. And a realm of Hell should look more epic than something thrown together with hot-glue and discount Halloween decorations.

Of course, RPG scenes have need no budget and so this is how I would have done the scene.  Paul awakens from the teleportation effect on some kind of stone dais, the only light in a seemingly cavernous room shines on him like a spotlight.  The dais is just high enough that the a dozens of zombies surrounding him can not reach him.  This is the moment that he realizes that he could be surrounded by thousands upon thousands of zombies in a huge cavern.  Ratspit called himself the “caretaker of the dead” and controlled the “discarded husks that once contained the human souls.”  If so, then there would be millions in his realm.  However, cinematically, I would only show a few just his feet and imply there are thousands and maybe millions around him.

Somewhere above him, perhaps sitting on his thrown on some ledge in the cavern is Ratspit, who challenges him to face his own death.  At that moment, another dais raises out of the crowd of zombies.  Standing on it is his zombie-self.  It proceeds to walk over the crowd of zombies below him, using the heads as stepping stones.  During this time, perhaps Paul has flashes of future challenges and how he might die – death by the torture devices of the Heavy Metal band, death by the Slasher and death by the Stone Canyon Statue – all greweling and gory.  Meanwhile, Cal could be calculating the possibilities of each, somehow tapped into this vision. The zombie-Paul then reaches Paul’s dais and perhaps a combat ensues but Paul eventually rejects the death saying it is only one of many probabilities, sighting mathematically all other possibilities, tying it back to technology and science.

Heavy Metal written by Charles Band brought me back to my 80s metalhead days.  The great 80s hair-band WASP makes an appearance in this one.  Paul is sent to a modern heavy metal concert in some crowded dive. Gwen stands chained in some torture apparatus while WASP plays their song, The Tormentor.   The crowd is full of vicious big-haired fans trying to prevent him from getting on stage to save Gwen.   The lead singer Blackie Lawless, threatens Gwen with a machete.  After another awkward and poorly shot fight sequence between Paul and the band, Paul uses Cal to determine the solution was sound waves – blast the band and crowd with a massive burst of sound waves and they will be free.  Wow, Cal has better speakers than an iPhone!

Again, a missed opportunity.  They thought of hacking into traffic lights to allow Paul an uninterrupted jog as well as hacking into ATMs to get money (both in the beginning scenes of the movie) but they did not think of hacking into sound systems of a rock band.  Admittedly, they did not really identify the source of the sound; it just happens.  But I assumed it was from his Cal device and not the sound system.  Although this whole scene was a stupid excuse to get a WASP song in the movie, it had potential if they really wanted to explore it.  The producers truly failed on this one because the dive they found was so cramped and small.  I feel it would have been more successful on a big stage where Paul would have to climb up to save Gwen.  Budget problems, again!

Again, imagination has no budget.  I would have had this in an arena with various torture devices in the background on stage.  I would also tie this into Gwen interest in dancing and perhaps plug this early on.  I would have her as a dance girl in one of the devices, something she has been trying out for.  Due to plants earlier in the movie, Paul knows there will be an accident and realizes it will cause the death of Gwen.  He rushes to stop it but demon-things as well as stage security try to stop him while he climbs back stage and attempts to save his girlfriend.  He uses the sound system to stun the demon things and everyone else, so he can nab Gwen from the faulty torture device.

Stone Canyon Giant written by David Allen is my favorite of all of the challenges, primarily because it uses stop-motion and was probably the single most expensive challenge in the movie.  Paul is transported to another world and like in almost every case, he awaken in it groggie from partial unconsciousness.  While trying to awaken from whatever magic Mestema used to transport him, two grunting dwarves snatch up his wrist computer and run off.  Paul chases them down for a bit until he stumble across a temple with some kind of giant monkey god statue with a jewel in its forehead, sitting on a throne.  The dwarves apparently placed Cal on an altar in front of the statue.  He retrieves it only to awaken the giant statue that apparently shoots lasers from his jewel.  A short fighting chase ensues, where the dwarves annoy him while he tried to get a shot off at the statues, and it ends with Paul shooting the statue in the jewel.  Ouch!

While  simple, this told a lot of story and left you wanting more.  What were the dwarves?  Why did they feel the need to leave an offering? I enjoyed this challenge thoroughly and there is no wonder it was featured a lot in the trailer. I think the lost opportunity was with the dwarves.  Instead of making them just grunt, why not let them tell more story?  So much more potential here but finally a legitimate use of the Cal wrist computer.

Slasher written by Jeffrey Byron is a very tropy and predictable story but it still has its moments.  It seems out of place, however, after so many challenges based in fantasy worlds.  Paul again is transported to another world – this time the modern one where he is basically framed for a murder that is apparently part of a series by a serial killer.  As it turns out, somehow Cal figures out that Gwen is the likely next target and Paul has to save her.  Paul has to escape the police and hunt down the killer using Cal.  This would have been a much more meaningful challenge if (1) it was truly connected to the real world and (2) Gwen’s character wasn’t stupid in it.  Suddenly, Gwen has amnesia and is in the real world seeking a dancing gig.  Why?  See below for my comments on connecting it to the real world.

Cave Beast written by Peter Manoogian is perhaps one of the lamest of all the challenges but in part because I do not think some of the story came across well.  It is another lost opportunity.  Paul is teleported to a cave opening where he hears a female voice calling out.  He thinks it is a trap and resists going down into it, However the cries continue and he eventually gives in.  Somewhere hidden in the cave is some kind of demon-troll, throwing exploding crystals at him.  He uses Cal’s lasers to bring down the cave ceiling on the creature only to discover that it was an angel trapped inside the trolls body.  She implies that she somehow “transgressed and was banished to this cave” but nothing is explained.  She then vanishes, implying that she did not actually die.  This could have been expanded to something far greater.

We have already established that Mestema with demon and devil imagery.  Why not make this angel-person a trapped enemy of Mestema and with some act of compassion, Paul frees her from her cave prison.  And then, at a moment of dire need in the final battle, she appears to return the favor. Such a missed opportunity.

Desert Pursuit written by Ted Nicolaou rehashes Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn, by re-using the same vehicles in a similar post-apocalyptic setting.  Paul and Gwen find themselves in a aircraft graveyard, somehow implying a post apocalypse. They are attacked by desert figures in these aforementioned vehicles.  A chase ensues and the only value of this scene is Gwen finally shows she is more than a damsel in distress.  Otherwise, it is simply a sad excuse of a ending story and probably was not needed.  I guess they just needed a chase scene.

In between each segment is various encounters between Paul and Mestema, one of which involved them battling it out with virtually created dragons that really do not seem to do much.  This segment alone would be awesome if they had half the budget of today’s films of this nature.  In the end, it comes down to an awkward fist fight between Paul and Mestema where Paul ends up pushing him over a cliff into some lava that was only planted a few minutes earlier.

Also, throughout the movie, the Cal-bracer device has the ability to do all kind of things not possible in the 1980s but some are possible today, giving it a rather visionary subtext.  He uses it to track down Gwen in Slasher, for example, almost simulating GPS location.  At times, when convenient,. Cal also responds to voice commands, like Ceri.  He also accesses police files remotely.

He also uses it constantly as a weapon, shooting lasers at everything.  Most of his solutions involve shooting something out that wrist computer.  Unfortunately, the effect is shooting out perpendicular to his wrist rather than a much cooler effect of shooting parallel from his wrist.  I found that kind of stupid.  You tell me which one is cooler?

Or this?

Come on, there is no comparison.  Additionally, there are times that he uses voice commands, while at others, he has to tap the screen or press buttons to get the wrist weapon to operate, creating a frustrating delay factor.  There isn’t really any consistency with the weapon aspect of the wrist computer.   In the end, the wrist weapons was really the ultimate missed opportunity. Although they did use this idea at the end to save Paul from falling into the pit of lava with Mestema in materializing something for him to grab, it’s frustrating that they did not allow the wrist computer to materialize a technological based weapon or tool to help him in each challenge.

There were two challenges that take place in the real world.  This is another lost opportunity in story and in an RPG campaign, can make for a much more intense challenge.  If they had connected these two events to the real world in the beginning, perhaps planting news headlines or TV broadcasts of a “concert accident that kills a dancer girl” (see above) or a “serial killer on the loose,” then these challenges would have deeper meaning and more impact.  The bothered with a scene where Gwen is dancing with a bunch of nameless girls.  Why not connect one of them to the serial killer as a victim.  A boyfriend that comes and picks her up while Paul is there meeting Gwen (seen in a flashback).  Later, Paul sees her face as a victim in the newspaper and he begins to put together the pieces.  That’s a lot better than the way they handled it in the movie – “The paper you read is tomorrow’s headline…” and it’s Gwen’s face on the page.  That’s just stupid.

I realize that is a lot of detail for a bad movie, but there was a lot of story potential in it.

The 12 Labors: From an RPG point of view, a series of challenges is a common theme in any genre.  As mentioned, it goes as far back as Greek and Roman mythology.  Each challenge should have a solution, however, but the GM should not railroad them in that direction.  Leave clues for one way, but leave enough room for the players to come up with their own. Sometimes, the player can come up with better solution than you thought of.

Best Pitch Card Game

Best Pitch
From: Broken Archer
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Best Pitch is a new Card Game from Broken Archer Games.

I have seen the fairly simple Apples to Apples mechanic (for lack of a better term) in many forms.  Cards Against Humanity is the most  well-known there days.  Best Pitch presents this same mechanic in a more family-friendly ad different way.  With a simple concept, a few cards, and the right group, fun for all can be had.

From the back cover: “Pitch your best idea with the most outstanding innovation to a panel of investors…”

Out of the box, there are three sets of cards – yellow Idea Cards, blue Innovation Cards and red Sabotage Cards.  Every player gets 2 of each card.  Each round, a different player is the Tycoon and everyone else is pitching ideas to the Tycoon.  Each player pitches an Idea, with an Innovation to the Tycoon, face down.  Before the Tycoon reads them, each player then plays a Sabotage on a single player’s Idea/Innovation pair.

Game play is simple, very similar to Apples to Apples or CAH.  We had a few laughs when we played but felt like it was missing something.  It’s a great family friendly game, where I think the kids would really enjoy it, but that’s not the crowd I playtested it with.  The relatively random sabotage aspect to the game (not knowing what exactly you are sabotaging) seemed kind of awkward but added as interesting aspect to the game.  At times, the sabotage enhanced the pitch.

From the back cover: “… but watch out as others are looking to sabotage your idea in favor of their own.”

While we enjoyed the game some, I feel the entire group wanted a little something more out of it.  It would be great to play with kids and family.  There is a potential for fun in this game in that environment.  Or at a convention with a mixed group of players.  I feel there is more potential with expansions that play to a specific group – adult, comic geeks, computer gamers, or something like that.  The ideas were somewhat generic and bland,  Combining them with the Enhancements did make them interesting but like I have said, there needed to be more.  I recommend this game for family game night with grade school kids or grandparents.

For more details on Broken Archer Games and their new Card GameBest Pitch” check them out at their website http://brokenarcher.com/, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 14 out of 20

Product Summary

Best Pitch
From: Broken Archer
Type of Game: Card Game
Website: http://brokenarcher.com/

Reviewed by: Ron McClung


MACE 2017: Emberbright Returns!

Matt Holmquist returns with the Living MACE campaign contest winner – Emberbright!  What is Emberbright.  A few years ago, we conducted a contest between some of the best GMs to create a world that MACE can call its own.  Matt was the final winner and his world, Emberbright represents a collection of ideas from those in the contest.

Matt and  JustUs Productions are continuing the development the setting that will act as our own living campaign setting. That means you can create a character for it at one event and play that character at other JustUs Productions events that host this living campaign. We are planning to run it in at least 3 different systems – Pathfinder, Savage Worlds, and D&D 5e.

Matt will be running his adventures in D&D 5e.


About Emberbright

Emberbright is a bleak fantasy world where humanity struggles as the subjugated species after a cataclysm of divine proportions.

A millennia ago, humankind nearly destroyed the world – an event later named the Unraveling. The greatest kingdoms lay to waste, and the largest race reduced to nomads. Those that did not devolve into tribal cults in the north, eeked out existence as servants to the Elf Mageocracy or as second rate members of the Ignis Combine. (Igni – goblinoid fire-elemental race). The gods, once protectors of man and their greatest strength, have gone silent. Lorekeepers of the remaining human settlements still espouse that faith will restore humanity to its previous glory. What few baronies managed to survive have started to form alliances. A rudimentary collection of city-states has laid the groundwork for the rise of the next great human kingdom. The balance of power may shift again. The Wizard Lords have enjoyed their time as the most powerful beings, and the Ignis Leaders would not give up their monopoly on trade and steam tech. What of the Icemen to the north… no one knows what agenda their seemingly random raids hold. The great cycle of the heavens nears another completion. What will the next thousand years hold? What part will you play in it?

MACE 2017

November 10-12 2017
The Best & Most Organized Carolina Gaming Con
Hilton Charlotte University Place
Charlotte, NC

MACE 2017: Star Wars X-Wing Tournament Prizes

MACE  2017 will be host to a Star Wars X-Wing Miniatures Tournament Saturday starting 1 PM until it ends.  The prizes  will include

There is the potential of even more prizes so stay tuned.

Register for the convention here


You will then get a activation code for our game registration system OGRe.

Go to http://ogre.justusproductions.com/

Search on Star Wars X-Wing Miniatures (in Game Name) for our X-Wing events.

MACE 2017

November 10-12 2017
The Best & Most Organized Carolina Gaming Con
Hilton Charlotte University Place
Charlotte, NC

MACE 2017: Play to Win Games List

Thanks to Double Exposure Inc, and the publishers (seen below) of these games, we have the following for Play to Win at MACE 2017.  Play a round of this games and have your name put in the pot.  Drawings will be announced on site.  Any GM that wishes to run a session and have their name in pot, please contact the .  Drawings for these games will take place on Sunday 4 pm.

Allsaid & Dunn

Bin’Fa: The Tao of War

B&B Game Studios


Baksha Games

Little Drop of Poison

Brain Games

Game of Trains

Ice Cool

Bezier Games

New York Slice


Chara Games

3 Seeds


Formal Ferret Games

The Networks



Zombie Terror

Ragers: Champions of the Arena



Gorilla Games

Desert Island

The Worst Game Ever

The Best Expansion Ever

Grail Games

Circus Flohcati

Doughnut Drive-Thru

Medici: The Card Game

Grandpa Beck’s Games

Cover Your Assets

Greater Than Games

VivaJava: The Coffee Game: The Dice Game




Adventure Land

Indie Boards & Cards

Pirate 21


The Resistance


INI, Inc.

Never Have I Ever


Jellybean Games


Mayday Games

Five Seals of Magic



Pandasaurus Games


The Game (On Fire)

Paw-Warrior Games

Ambyria: Shroud of the Shadow Demon

Portal Games

Tides of Madness

Overworld Games


Good Cop Bad Cop

Leaders of Euphoria: Choose a Better Oppressor

R&R Games 

Dragon Island

Pickle Letter

Pyramid Poker

Shades of Vengeance

Champion of Earth

Smirk & Dagger

Paramedics: Clear

Stronghold Games

Flamme Rouge

Tasty Minstrel Games 


Okey Dokey


Thames & Kosmos

Word Slam

Brutal Kingdom

Triton Noir




Munchkin: Rick & Morty


Victory Point Games

Twilight of the Gods

Wattsalpoag Games

A Fistful of Penguins

Claim It!


MACE 2017

November 10-12 2017
The Best & Most Organized Carolina Gaming Con
Hilton Charlotte University Place
Charlotte, NC

OGRe 102: Updated Schedule Posters (MACE 2017)

I have made some slight changes to the schedule posters that I want people to be aware of.  Here are instructions on how to read our schedule posters.  We understand it is a lot of information.  We are simply trying to convey this information the best way we know how for everyone interested. We are trying to reduce the amount of questions you need to ask me or my staff and provide you with an easy way to determine the three basics of convention gaming – what, when and where!

What are the posters?

Onsite, at the convention, we like to provide with easy means to see what is going on.  That includes printed schedules, online resources and schedule posters.  The posters are located at gaming registration and you can use the tickets to sign up if you don’t have online access at the con.  Please note that Internet access at MACE in Charlotte will not be commonly available to attendees unless they have a hotel room.


It’s the simplest means for people to see what is going on at the con.  We at the registration desk attempt to keep things updated on the posters as best as possible but it is not always 100% accurate.

Find your game

The first thing you do is find the game you are looking for the Game Name/Game Title(Largest letters next to the game logo).  Each day is listed under a different colored header (Friday is light blue, Saturday is sort of a Pink/Light Purple, and Sunday is  Red.  Then each Start Time is listed on the left side, as you can see above (Friday 4:00 PM).  Games are listed by Start Time and ordered alphabetically by game name, but grouped by Game Type (Board/Card Games, RPGs, Miniature Games, etc).  You can see how long a game is (duration) by the Time Slot on the right of each row, listed with “When:”.

For regular one-shot RPGs (non-Organized Play), and other tabletop board/card/mini games, you can find the game name listed. However, for Organized Play, we list the scenario name since the game itself is a given .

  • DDEX & DDAL = D&D Adventure League, the organized play associated to Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition RPG.
  • PFS = Pathfinder Society, the organized play associated with the Pathfinder RPG
  • SRM = Shadowrun Missions, the organized play associated with the Shadowrun RPG
  • CoC = Recently, the new Call of Cthulhu 7th edition has started an organized play campaign called Cults of Chaos.

Organized Play games traditionally require the player to provide the character although  there are pre-gens available online.  On the posters, Organized Play is listed under the RPGs segregated out by a yellow band denoting the specific organized play game (see above).

For regular or general play one-shot RPGs, the game is listed and the title is listed in blue on the line below it, right justified.  They also include seating boxes showing available seats for that game.

Above is an example of a variety of board games.  The title (in blue) is sometimes blank but sometimes list the type of demo, scenario or tournament that is being run.

Everything you need to know about the game is listed along the same top line from the Game Name.  Game Name (what), Location (Where in Green Text), and Time slot (When).  A note on slot length, we traditionally use Board

Check the Status Dots

Once you find the game you are looking for, check the dot icon.  That contains A LOT of information for the player.  Here is the basic meaning of each dot.

Before you attempt to sign up for a game onsite, take a look at this icon.  If it is full (red dot), we are only taking alternates for that game (and not all games do).  However, Alternates must be managed by you and the GM.  We don’t do anything special for alternates.  The GM is required to give every opportunity to those that signed up first.  We instruct them to wait at least 10 to 15 minutes after the session has started before accepting alternates.

The most important icon in that bunch however is the one we call the “target.”

For those games, you do not need to do anything other than go to the location of the game for whatever reason is listed in the message box.

Most Organized Play games are coordinated by a single person and you will need to find that person to find a table.  Most of the time, the coordinator will not be distinguishable from other GMs in OP because they are running games themselves.  You will have to simply ask us the name of the coordinator and ask around.

Other games with a “target” can be demos, or tournaments coordinated by other people as well.  Or the slot may be long enough for more than one game.  Or the coordinator of the game may have multiple copies.  Instead of trying to micro-manage all of that, we encourage the player to simply go to the location and work it out with the GM ro event coordinator.  An example above shows the Warmachine events.  They are targets because they are coordinated by a single person (list as the Host).


We Show the state of the Organized play tables as of preregistration, however, unlike regular games, we do not keep up with the current state of organized play, as they are handled by the coordinator and can be more fluid other games.


Above is an example of organized play.  Notice that the full games and the open games have a “target” and the open seats of a question mark.   Do not expect to sign up at gaming registration for these games.  They are handled by the coordinator.  But this at least gives those interested in playing these an idea of what might be full and might have open seats still.  The later in the weekend we get, however, the less likely those seats will be open.

For other games with open seats (blank boxes), we ask you fill in the box with an “X” once your we sign you onsite.  We prefer you wait until after we verify that the poster is accurate (as we may not have had time to verify and update them, it is a manual process.)   Obviously, OGRe is the most accurate way to determine if the games are full or not but we supply the poster system so you don’t have to always rely on that.


Additionally, there is a notation that indicates preregistration overflow.  Above you can see an example of a game with a few overflow pre-registrations.  We won’t be  keeping up with this throughout the weekend but this at least gives you an idea of the state of the game at pre-registration and the likelihood you will get a seat at that particular game.


MACE 2017: MACE Kids Games!

MACE 2017 will features a few special games just for kids.  These include games presented by the Game Theory Camp of Charlotte Day Camp as well as the fine folks of Dwarven Crate/Illusionist Investment Group.

Room: Keynes.  Hours: Friday 4 pm to 9 pm.  Saturday 8 am to 6 pm

Saturday 9 AM – 11 AM

Splendor – w/ Cities of Splendor Expansion by Game Theory Camp/Charlotte Day Camp

From Game Theory Camp: The recent Cities of Splendor expansion offers four ways to expand the game Splendor. This is one of the most popular games we had with kids. We plan to play the standard version of the game, but introduce the expansions to participants who understand the strategy and mechanics of base game.  Ages 8+.  Can take a wide range of kids in this game with multiple copies can split them into beginner, intermediate and advanced.

Saturday 11 AM-1 PM

Settlers Games by Game Theory Camp/Charlotte Day Camp

From Game Theory Camp: Settlers of Catan and Catan Histories: Merchants of Europe.  We are offering Merchants as a companion would be a good way to give players a break in the action and try a similar game with some unique mechanics. We have found that Settlers has the broadest appeal to kids looking to get into wider gaming world with strong name recognition.  Age 10+

Saturday 2 PM-4 PM

3D RoboRally FOR KIDS, by Dwarven Crate/Illusionist Investment Group

7 Wonders Games by Game Theory Camp/Charlotte Day Camp

From Game Theory Camp:  7 Wonders is consistently one of the highest rated board games. We also plan to offer 7 Wonders Duel at the activity as well. This allows for a diverse experience with the game theme and mechanics. 7 Wonders can take up to 7 players and Duel takes 2.  Ages 10+.

Saturday 4 PM-6 PM

Various Card Games by Game Theory Camp/Charlotte Day Camp – Innovation, Fluxx, Fight for Olympus, Bang, Cash & Guns, Exploding Kittens

From Game Theory Camp:  Some of these card games are more complex than others, but the important things is many are quick to start playing and they can have fun right away. Throughout the block they can learn the nuance of the rules.

MACE 2017

November 10-12 2017
The Best & Most Organized Carolina Gaming Con
Hilton Charlotte University Place
Charlotte, NC