Convention AARs and Centurions
Event Reports

2002 Centurions  

WBC’s evolution gathered speed in 2002 despite a poor economy. The event kiosks, now in their eleventh year of service, got a facelift to include a color-coded event sheet which defined each event by experience required in a traffic light anology from Advanced (red—experience required), to Beginner (yellow—mandatory scheduled tutorial attendance required for the inexperienced), to Coached (green—event taught in progress). Each event also included a full color pictorial winners gallery of past champions to create a mini “hall of fame” for each event at its place of concentration. Event pre-registration was eliminated as unnecessary given WBC’s player-friendly policy of accepting all players present at start with a copy of the game. Gaming space was expanded and vendor expenses curtailed by cutting vendor operations to four days. Meanwhile, Steve Okonski continued to blaze new trails in conference services on the BPA website with his personal scheduler in which players could program and print color-coded copies of their personal schedules. The addition of two pre-cons—separate mini-cons for the dedicated swiss play of Paths of Glory and Hannibal in the four days preceding WBC—was used to ease schedule conflicts for the long and popular card-driven wargame genre while providing a partial answer to the minority call for an even longer WBC.

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The third leg of the WBC Triple Crown was borne with the advent of the Caesar Award to name our top competitor of the Year. The brainchild of Stuart Tucker, whose handicapping of the annual Team Tournament had become a tradition all its own, the Caesar Award fairly measured prowess in the entire spectrum of boardgaming competition regardless of one’s preference in games; long or short, simple or complex, wargame, Euro, rail or sport—all were fairly quantified in a point system that gave each event a common denominator in naming our top competitor of the Year while also factoring in email, mini-con, and finalist points for a well balanced measuring stick that excluded no one. Marvin Birnbaum emerged as our initial Caesar despite winning only one Century event at WBC but padded his score with strong performances at BPA mini-cons and email tournaments. Seven events had 100 or more players, led by newcomers Puerto Ricowith 152 and Carcassonne with 150. Jeff Cornett led the way with a triple for wins in Euphrat & Tigris, Napoleon and Robo Rally although Dave Metzger had a “minor league” homerun with four wins, albeit inclusive of three trial events. Rob Beyma, Debbie Garver, Tom Gregorio, Charles Hickok, Rob Kilroy, John Pack, Peter Reese, Phil Rennert, Jon Shambeda, Mike Sincavage and Joe Sposito all added doubles in the best year yet for multiple winners. Seven defending champs retained their titles.