GameStorm Winter Newsletter.
First off, we apologize for the delays. Normally this update would have sent this shortly after Thanksgiving, but life has been crazy and GameStorm has only been a portion of that! But rest assured, we are still moving forward, and this weekend finds us with a large amount of updates to share.
In This episode:
· Covid Response Plans
· Game Submissions are Live!
· Hotel Block Link
· Membership Pricing Schedule and Rollover Status
· Game Day
Covid-19 Response Plan
The most common questions people are asking us revolve around our responses and requirements for vaccinations or testing. While we would love to give you a solid 100% answer right now, we can’t.
We know that the requirements and limitations are changing on an almost-daily basis, and we as a group want to make sure the event is as safe as possible. Right now, our current intention is to make a final decision sometime around January 22nd. This will be about 2 months before the convention and will give us the best insight as to where things should be while still giving everyone a chance to respond as needed. Hopefully nothing drastic changes after that point, but from there we will be ready.
Great news! After some hard work and long hours from our technical team, GameCon, The Game Submission System, is live and ready to accept games. If you are interested in running a game, this is when you would go ahead and submit your game requests. Please be as detailed as possible including preferred times and table needs. Please note that due to increased distancing we likely will not have quite as many tables as previous years but will do our best to accommodate everyone’s requests while still leaving plenty of tables for open play.
To submit your game, please go to: https://gamestorm.org/schedule/index.html and make sure you are signed in with your GameStorm login information. If you have any issues with this login, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and they will work to assist you.
As soon as we have tables ready to schedule and the games are scheduled, we will open for Player Signups. Watch for more updates on this near the end of January.
As we have previously announced, as of January 1st the hotel will be changing names to the Holiday Inn on the River-Jantzen Beach. As part of this change, the link to reserve hotel rooms has moved. Please visit the following link to reserve your room if you have not already: https://www.ihg.com/holidayinn/hotels/us/en/portland/pdxhv/hoteldetail?fromRedirect=true&qSrt=sBR&qIta=99801505&icdv=99801505&qSlH=PDXHV&qGrpCd=GST&setPMCookies=true&qSHBrC=HI&qDest=909%20N.%20Hayden%20Island%20Drive,%20Portland,%20OR,%20US&srb_u=1
Make sure to adjust the dates to the ones you wish to be staying as the new site does not automatically default to our dates (we are working on this). This will be the best price you can get for a hotel during the convention so you can continue to game all weekend (and having a room gives you a great place to relax socially away from others, enjoy a meal, and more).
Membership Pricing Schedule and Rollover
As we move on through the year, this is just a reminder that the price of GameStorm memberships will go up again on December 31st to $70.00 and will remain there until March 12th, which will be the last day you can purchase before buying at the convention.
If you have not yet confirmed your rolled-over membership, please note that unless you have asked for a refund, you have a 98% chance of being already moved over; however, please contact email@example.com to verify your status. We are working within our system to send out an email to everyone, but this has not been as easy as we had hoped.
That’s right! We are going to squeeze in one more Game Day! This Will be January 22nd from 9AM-9PM at the hotel. As with all Game Days, these are free to attend and bring your friends. Come check out some new games or bring one of your favorites to show off.
For this Game Day, Masks will be required at all times while in the event space. If you have a drink, you may quickly remove it to take a drink, but please replace mask quickly between drinks. If you wish to eat, we encourage you to step out of the event space to have a bite to eat then return.
Our last Game Day was nicely spaced out with plenty of room between tables and we expect the same for this one.
Thank you all for your continued patience and support of GameStorm. We are just a group of volunteers getting together to have a good time with our friends doing something we enjoy. The past 2 years have been a rough one, but it is getting better and all of you help keep us going.
-GameStorm 22 Chair.
For the first time in what seems forever, we are happy to announce our free Game Day! Come join your friends and play some games on August 21st from 9AM to 9PM at the Red Lion Jantzen Beach!!!
The Game library will be present to try some new games. You are also welcome to bring your own games with you.
For the safety of those around you at the Game Day, we are asking that anyone who is unvaccinated to please remain at home. Masks will not be required but you are welcome to wear one should you choose. We will have a limited supply of hand sanitizer available as well as some disinfectant spray for tables. We will recommend if you are not currently playing a game to move outside of the ballroom area to allow space for those who will need the table. This includes leaving for meal breaks. Should there not be a demand of course you are welcome to stay.
We understand many of you are still concerned, and we are taking all currently advised precautions within our power as well as communicating with the hotel for any guidance they may be able to provide.
Please direct any questions to our Facebook Community Event or firstname.lastname@example.orgWe look forward to seeing you there.
-Jason-GameStorm 22 Chair
As pandemic restrictions lighten, we continue to ramp up and plan for GameStorm 22 (Revision 2.5), now set for March 2022. As we move forward, we will start providing more frequent updates and want to make sure you are all having your voices heard when it comes to what we are planning.
Without further ado, let’s get to it.
Memberships are live again for those who have not purchased a membership yet. You can go to gamestorm.org to purchase a membership at $55.00. This is the lowest price and matches what it was when we were trying to prepare in 2020 at this time. If you know someone who has not yet received a membership, now is the time to get one.
Our hotel block is also live. If you want to enjoy the full action of all 4 days, we strongly encourage you to reserve a room and stay onsite. Go to our website for the link, pricing, and availability. Please note that the ‘block’ reserved for GameStorm is longer than the convention so some people can arrive earlier/stay longer and still get our great rate.
Even though Oregon and Washington are lightening up restrictions, we are being extra diligent for new information and changes to requirements. While masks are currently not required, things could change between now and March, so please keep watching for continuous updates.
GameStorm will do everything we can to assist in the safekeeping of our members, including taking additional cleanliness measures that are still being developed, having hand sanitizer onsite, and more. We are evaluating the lending library as well, but still plan on having it available.
The largest change that comes out of this is that we have chosen at this time to discontinue our hospitality suite. A combination of factors, including the pandemic assessment, have led to this decision. It was also not an easy decision as we have had this available for years. We are still planning on having the Glisan ‘eating’ area available, and are still considering having a possible drink service, but this has not been confirmed. We are also looking at possibly having a food truck on site for additional food service options for people. We will update you as we have more information.
We have started planning our first GAME DAY since Early 2019. We are waiting for some additional information on the latest strain of Covid-19, but we are hoping for a mid August date. Watch our social media channels as well as an updated news letter for details once we have them confirmed.
Our Game Library is still planning to be at Rose City Comic Con, Kumoricon, and OryCon, pending available space and restrictions. If you want to play some of our games with us, please visit us while you are at these events.
Game Submissions for GameStorm 22 should open sometime in November or December. Get ready to start planning those big game events.
We are always on the lookout for new volunteers, and we have some key staff positions we are in dire need to fill, and that would be our Pre-Convention and At Con registration. These have been the same person in the past but can be easily moved to be 2 people.
Pre-Convention oversees handling any online purchases, controlling the database, and working with Treasury on any refunds. They also make sure badges are created and available for at the convention.
At the Convention, registration handles onsite sales and cash transactions, distributes badges, and coordinates onsite sales for the next GameStorm.
If you are interested in these or any other volunteer opportunities, please contact us at email@example.com
Q&A (Questions asked during the Live chat)
- How do people who purchased a GameStorm 22 shirt get one?
The shirts will be available at the Game Day. Due to the delays (no excuses) if you would like the shirt sooner, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org (No new orders at this time, but these may be made available at events)
- Will there be dealers?
We still expect to have all features we normally have at our convention except for Hospitality. If you are interested in having a booth, please contact our Dealer Liaison (email@example.com). Limited space may be available.
- Any concerns about the board game lending library? Will there be sanitation between users?
We do not know currently. It is unlikely to have constant sanitation of all parts as they come in for a game, but we are monitoring how other conventions are handling of items such as this as well as continuing guidance from the CDC for further changes. We will have hand sanitizer available for those who wish to use it.
- Can we have disinfectant wipes at the table?
This is a great idea, but there is a significant cost and labor to having this available. We will investigate what it may take to have something like this or another option available, including having wipes available at the library for those who wish to use them.
- Are you still moving forward with card holders / other devices to help with disabilities?
Our Game Librarian has confirmed we will have some card holders, bit bowls, and other things available in limited supplies for those who wish to utilize them. We are also going to have things such as a basic set of braille dice available.
- Has there been anything heard from Play and Win?
It is still planned as usual. Our Play and Win is very popular so we would love to continue it. Please bear in mind that support for that is totally dependent on support from publishers and game designers so we hope that they are also recovering well.
Thanks to everyone who joined the live chat, and those who still support us after all this time. We look forward to coming back to normal soon and hope to see you all. If you have any questions, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org or message us via FaceBook.
-GameStorm 22 Chair
The Hotel Block for GameStorm 22 is open. Follow the link below and get your rooms today!
Hello GameStorm Fans,
We know everyone’s been waiting for updates. This year has been full of hurry-up-and-wait moments and other issues that kept us from having all the details we would normally share with you. However, we finally have some information available to share.
Unfortunately, after discussions with the Hotel, we have agreed to once again cancel GameStorm for March of 2021. We know that many of you were looking forward to this event (as were we) but t does not look like the pandemic will be well-controlled enough to allow for any event of the size we would need to run.As it stands right now, our next official event will be GameStorm 22.1A (name improvement incoming) in March of 2022. We are using this downtime to make improvements to our systems as well as other planning adjustments. We look forward to sharing more details as we move forward.There will be many questions – and we may not have answers for them all immediately.
Here is what we currently know:1) Any hotel room that was reserved in the GameStorm hotel block should already be canceled. We would recommend following up with the hotel to ensure yours has been removed just in case.2) A decision regarding rolling money forward vs refunding has not been made yet and will not be until after the Holidays. Please hold off on communication with our registration team or treasury until we have had a chance to make a call on this. Once we have, we will set up as easy of a process as we can for whichever option or combination we come up to.3) As of this moment, we are not considering a digital GameStorm. The amount of overhead and time to redirect people to other platforms that most gamers are already familiar with does not currently make sense.
We are still evaluating options however and want to work with our community.We are currently looking at ways of increasing our presence and interaction with the community and would love your input! What would you like to see from GameStorm during the downtime? More videoss? Reviews? Mini web-panels? Challenge our Staff to online game sessions? Let us know by contacting email@example.com.
Less if we don’t.We all appreciate your patience and understanding. GameStorm is a passion and we want to continue to bring you the best gaming in the Northwest as safely as possible.
-Jason-Chair, GameStorm 22 (now in 2022)
Many of you have been waiting to hear on the status for GameStorm 22 amid the current Pandemic. We have been working closely with our Board of Directors, as well as monitoring all current health code requirements.
First off, we are going to say this again. GameStorm 22 in March (26th-29th) has been canceled. Current regulations make it impossible for us to host this event and it would not be safe in general.
So many of you ask ‘Where does this leave us?’ and that’s what I’m going to answer now.
At first, we thought we could reschedule and attempt another convention later this summer. However, upon looking at the schedule of events that are already normally on the schedule for this time of year, coupled with the extremely short timeline we would have to reset and do it all again and the fact that all the other events that the hotel has had to cancel or postpone are going to be vying for these spots, we have decided that hosting an event this year is not in anyone’s best interest. We are still intending on having the GameStorm Library present at Rose City Comic Con, OryCon, and Kumoricon; however, so we are not missing out entirely on events this year. We will also still have our Game Days, but more on those later.
That brings us to what happens in 2021. While normally this would be a brand new convention setup, we have, along with our Board, decided to make 2021 the official home of GameStorm 22, Second Edition! (name tentative). This means we are moving forward and will still have this convention, just a year later! The weekend of the event is the same (March 25th-28th) and will be at the same hotel with the same primary guest of Honor (Peter Olotka).
What does this mean for you? Let me go ahead and answer those questions:
If you purchased a membership for GameStorm 2020 and have not contacted our registration team, do nothing. Your membership will roll directly over into the following year without issue.
If you did ask for a refund, you will be contacted by our registration team about seeing if you wish to re-purchase a membership at the same price you received it for previously.
If you have not purchased a membership, memberships are going back on sale tonight (March 21st) at 70.00, the last posted price we had, and will stay that way until we stop sales next March.
If you offered to donate your money, we have moved your donation back in as a valid membership. If you would rather keep this as a donation (which is tax deductable) please contact our registration team to see about special dispensation for membership.
If you had purchased a membership for 2020 and are unable to attend, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for a refund or to donate your purchase.
If you were hosted in our Dealers hall, Our current plan is to restructure based on the original list that was approved, but please wait for our Liaison to contact you for more information.
We are using this extra year to fine tune the scheduling system and plan to bring it back online October 1st. Due to the ever changing nature of games, we will be setting this back to square 1, but we will be keeping records. If you do not see any reason to change your schedule from what you had this year, please contact email@example.com and they will be happy to make sure we re-upload your events.
Our Hotel block will be open again soon for those who wish to purchase rooms. As this is a new hotel contract, I do not have current pricing on what the block price will be. Stay tuned.
Hopefully I have covered all the questions, but if you have any others, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
-Chair(again) GameStorm 22, 2nd Edition.
Thank you for your patience during this confusing and unprecedented time. We will have an update on Saturday about what is happening with GameStorm.
In conjunction with Governor Kate Browns Announcement, as of this moment, GameStorm 22 (March 26th-29th) will not occur. We apologize for any travel arrangements you may have made to attend. I am going to use this post to answer as many questions as I can:
1) What happens now?
The Short answer: We don’t know.
The Longer answer: Our Hotel team and parent organization (OSFCI) are in discussions right now to see if we have an option to postpone GameStorm to mid/late summer, or it will be easier to cancel outright. We are hoping to have updates quickly and as soon as we have that information we will be quick to share it.
2) What about my paid membership
This depends on what happens in question 1, however there are options.
-You can ask for a refund: Contact email@example.com and you will be given a refund without any issue.
-You can donate your membership costs to GameStorm/OSFCI. Just let Registration know.
-We are looking at options to rollover all memberships to next years event should we have to cancel. For this, please wait until we have an answer to #1 and we will be able to discuss options.
3)What happens to my Complimentary Membership
Much easier. Your complimentary membership will still be good for our next convention that occurs
4)How do I handle my hotel reservation
Please contact the hotel and cancel your hotel reservation directly with them. We are still outside the penalty window for cancellation so this should have no impact
5)What about my flight/train
Unfortunately we cannot do anything about anyone who travels in from other areas. We do recommend travel insurance, or if your airline allows it, moving the time/destination to better suit or to our next event.
6)How will this impact the OSFCI board elections
the OSFCI board of directors is not directly tied to the convention staff or event. However, invitations to join the corporation are based on helping at our events. my intent is to still credit all members for their assistance this year to ensure proper credit is given.
7)If GameStorm is postponed, when would it be held
very likely we would target late July if possible. This is before GenCon, and allows us to not conflict with Dragonflight. It also allows us to be wrapped up before OryCon really gets close.
8)When are the dates for next years GameStorm?
March 25th-28th. Same weekend as this year.
please remember to join our public group on Facebook to discuss GameStorm and anything GameStorm related.
-GameStorm 22 Chair
Like you, we are saddened to hear about the postponement of ECCC and the cancelation of events like CMON and SXSW. These are major events that have some lasting impact not only on gaming at large, but also on the companies, artists, and vendors who attend, as well as the staff who run them.
At this point, GameStorm is still going to occur. We are less than 2% of the size of ECCC and over 90% of our attendance is local. Our demographics are different enough that we do not believe the convention needs to cancel.
That being said we are going absolutely taking precautions. We are still working our sources for hand sanitizer stations and will be working throughout the day to keep all areas clean. We will also be relying on you, our loyal members, to help us keep everything as clean and safe as possible.
That said, if you do decide you would feel safer staying home, we understand. You can contact our registration team (firstname.lastname@example.org) to assist. (Your hotel and travel, unfortunately, we cannot help with)
If you do come, we promise a great time as always
Be safe, be careful, and have fun!
GameStorm 22 Chair
From the Desk of the Chair, GameStorm 22
As hopefully all of you have seen, the world is handling a major crisis in the from of Coronavirus (COVID-19), an extremely dangerous virus that has started taking lives here in the United States. This is not something to ignore, but we also want to be smart about it.
At this time, GameStorm is still going to happen as it was planned. However we are making some small changes that are in compliance with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines. Please note that this could change at any time and we are actively monitoring all recommended actions by both the Oregon Health Alliance (OHA) and the CDC. The below information is based on our current standing and requirements. Should the suggested actions by the CDC change, we will act accordingly.
Pending the finding of some available to purchase, hand sanitizer will be made available in all function spaces and staff will have portable bottles available with them. While this does not replace handwashing, it will protect against some transmission areas. Additionally, it will be STRONGLY encouraged to be used upon entering either of the 2 hospitality rooms.
Signage will be up to direct people to the nearest restroom. We strongly recommend washing hands between games, or whenever you move between rooms. We are aware that there is limited sink access in the wings of the hotel and are working on solutions for this.
We will be using sanitizing sprays during lulls in games. These will be as close to fragrance free as possible, especially in enclosed spaces. Most of this will be happening during off hours.
Beyond that, there is very little, short of shutting down GameStorm, we can do to protect our members. Unlike other larger events that have closed (GDC, Facebook-8), we are all volunteer and non profit, and a year of closure can be devastating.
We ARE however asking that if you are feeling ill, or potentially have been exposed, that you think of the rest of the membership when attending. Our staff is going to work within its abilities to protect all members of the convention.
If you have further questions, please feel to reach out to me directly at email@example.com
Thank you for your love of GameStorm,
-Chair, GameStorm 22