We have always had some amazing panels at OrcaCon, and for 2020, we’ve added workshops! Please be sure to check our online scheduler to get the most up-to-date information about the panels and the workshops – https://orcacon2020.sched.com/

Friday, January 10th:

12:00pm (Panel) – Welcome to OrcaCon 2020

The OrcaCon Board and Convention Staff welcome you to OrcaCon 2020. We’ll talk about the creation of OrcaCon, the changes between last year and this year, along with some special shout outs about content and accessibility changes. We’ll kick off the convention with a rockin’ panel, and we’ll be here to answer your questions about OrcaCon!

1:30pm – (Panel) Queers across the multiverse

Magic the Gathering is one of most played games in the world, but how is it doing representing the community that plays it? Wizards has a lot of positive things to say on social media, but how well is this put into practice? This panel will look into how queers and neurodivergent people are currently represented on the cards and in Magic story. What has Wizards done right and where does improvement still need to be made? 

2:00pm – (Workshop) – Paint & Take

Paint and Take sponsored by the Brush Wielder’s Union. Learn to paint a miniature, and take it home with you! https://www.facebook.com/brushwieldersunion/

4:30pm – (Panel) GMing for New Players

How do you give new players the best experience possible? Hear from several GMs on how to put new players at ease and get them hooked on the hobby.

6:00pm – (Talk) Sin Fronteras

A personal journey of the past year playing games and exploring my latinidad through games. How to incorporate that part of me, along with being queer, into various game types and characters, and searching for games that already included it, either by latinx game designers or ones willing to work with consultants. 

Saturday, January 11th:

9:00am – (Workshop) – Building Your World

Creating your own world can be one of the most rewarding and daunting aspects of the tabletop RPG hobby. It’s easy to fall back on reliable tropes and ideas, but it doesn’t have to go that way! Join Graeme Barber of POCGamer for a half day workshop on Building Your World, covering topics like world design, population distribution and cultural mechanics, monster use, pantheon design, how your choice of system will affect your design, and more! 

10:00am – (Panel) – Do Not Pass. Go.

A frank discussion of my so-called part-time so-called freelance experience as a so-called person of color in the tabletop gaming industry.

11:30am – (Panel) – Charlatanry and Chicanery: Gamemastering on the Fly

Deep wells of research, reams of notes, and mountains of game statistics–these are all good Game Mastering tools, but there’s one skill that can’t be prepared: improvisation. The best GMs can create memorable experiences for players out of nearly any challenge, whether the players’ decisions have entirely derailed their plans or the players just aren’t picking up the hints they’re dropping. In short, being a good GM is about being a consummate BSer. Join the best BSers in the business for tips, tricks, and philosophies, plus answers to your questions about how to handle the most challenging scenarios players might throw your way.

11:30am – (Workshop) – Circle Theory: A Narrative Structure Tool

Circle theory is a tool created to take the narrative structure of a story of any size and break it down. The circles help designers understand what elements of a narrative make a story powerful, and how to start designing toward that goal in a tangible way.

1:00pm – (Panel) – Going Mainstream

So, you’ve dabbled in indie games – maybe even produced one or two. But maybe you also have a secret hankering to work for “the establishment.” How easy is it to work in both fields, or move from one to the other? What can indy games teach the mainstream, and vice versa? And how clear is that demarcation these days with the rising availability of professional-level self-publishing tools and the existence of the DM’s Guild and the Miskatonic Repository?

2:00pm – (Workshop) – Beyond #MeToo: Resources for Dealing With Sexual Violence and Harassment

There’s no denying that sexual harassment, sexual assault, and intimate partner violence are serious problems in both the gaming industry and the gaming community at large. It’s easy for outsiders to say “go to HR” or “go to the police,” but those may not be viable or even desired options for all victims. This panel of legal and advocacy experts will provide information on a variety of non-criminal legal options, as well as community resources to help victims find safety and support. We will be focusing as much as possible on low cost or no cost solutions, and legal responses that do not require an attorney.

This panel is for anyone who may be experiencing, or has experienced, sexual violence, no matter their gender or sexual orientation. We also welcome anyone who wants to learn about options to help friends or family who are victims and may not feel comfortable attending themselves. Attendees will be provided with information packets for reference, and we will also have a system for asking questions anonymously during the Q&A section of the panel.

Due to the sensitive nature of this topic there will be no photography allowed in the panel room for the duration of the session.

2:30pm – (Panel) Not Having Racism in your settings, campaign or at the table

Tabletop is growing and expanding, and with it there’s an increased need for diversity at the table. Let’s talk frankly about why racism at the table shouldn’t be a thing you do as a GM or player. Also, let’s get real about racism in our settings and campaigns, talk about what we can do to stamp it out as much as possible in a land where elves, orcs, and dragons roam but racism seems to be a never-ending boss battle.

4:00pm – (Panel) – Queer as a 3-sided die

Industry panelists lead discussion of gender and sexuality issues in gaming from design and publishing to game-play and community. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people are a part of the gamer community. Although the gaming community is known for its tolerance, LGBT people still often struggle to see places for themselves in the fantasy worlds we create.

4:30pm – (Workshop) – Paint & Take

Paint and Take sponsored by the Brush Wielder’s Union. Learn to paint a miniature, and take it home with you! https://www.facebook.com/brushwieldersunion/

5:45 – (Show) – d20 Dames Live Show

A one-shot adventure set at Emerald Forest Adventure Con, featuring d20 Dames with special guest Graeme Barber (POC Gamer).

Sunday, January 12th:

10:00am – (Workshop) – Circle Theory: Building and Dissecting Narrative

Circle Theory is a simple tool that allows anyone of any experience level to understand narrative structures. Each Circle represents a part of a character’s goals, environment, and the conditions that push them forward. Come utilize Circle Theory and bring some of the most complex narratives down into the realm of accessible understanding.

10:00am – (Panel) – So, You Want to Run Your Own Convention?

There are so many new cons popping up all over the country. There are just as many which stall out, fail, cancel, or get shut down. Creating your own convention can be challenging, but it can also be extremely rewarding. Learn how to get started and get some helpful tips about funding, dates/places, and more. 

11:30am – (Panel) – Working (Far) From Home

In this day and age of fast, reliable internet connectivity, fewer and fewer companies expect you to live and work in the same town or city. So are you limiting your freelancing potential by just looking to companies who are registered in the country you happen to live in? What’s it like working across different time zones and with different cultural expectations? What can you do to help broaden your work base?

12:30pm – (Workshops) – Okay Orcs and Evil Elves: Race and Races

Do orcs always have to be the bad guys? Are elves always the paragons of civilization and righteousness (if those are even the same thing)? Join us for a discussion of fantasy races, speciation, and racism in games. 

1:00pm – (Panel) – Streaming RPGs 101

A lot of folks want to get into streaming their favorite RPG, but they often want to know how? Let’s get into some basics, like camera, streaming locally or if you’re running an online game and more.

2:00pm – (Event) – Play & Win Raffle

Did you play games in the Play & Win library and put your ticket in the wee containers? Want to see if you can take a game home? We’ve moved the raffle into the Panel Room so everyone can make sure to get their games!

4:00pm – (OrcaCon Staff Panel & Q&A) Critical Hits & Misses

The OrcaCon Board and Staff will be hosting a Critical Hits & Misses panel. Come listen in to what we thought went well, what we want to improve for 2021! You can also give your feedback and suggestions, so bring them to the panel.

We will also be making some announcements for the 2021 show, so don’t miss out!