I am recently returned from WBC, which is held annually in Lancaster, PA. About 1,500 gamers from all over the globe participate in 100 "Century" events and others which are on "Trial" status, over a week's time. The winners get plaques and notoriety. The losers get experience and the fun of playing.
My status as a member of The Greenville Mafia meant I was part of the best-run team apparatus at the convention. The Mafia took four carloads of people, and we stayed in a block of rooms reserved for us. Our first activity was the ceremonial issuance of this year's Mafia shirt, a handsome grey polo with our Puppetmaster logo on the chest and a black heart embroidered on the left arm. Since Mafia people have been going to the WBC since it began 13 years ago, our veterans have more team shirts than they can wear in a week, so we had a schedule of what color to wear when. We newbies simply matched colors as best we could. When our group gathered, people noticed! One person spotted near the venue for "The Kaiser's Pirates" (a naval wargame played with cards) was asked if he were joining in the competition. His reply: "I see all those gold shirts! No way I'm getting sucked into THAT vortex!" (He was well-advised to steer clear! "Kaiser's Pirates" is a favorite of the Mafia, and our members won 6 of the top 7 spots!) The Mafia has class, too. There was a hospitality suite run for Mafia & friends. We had monogrammed drinking cups, dice - and even our own microbrew beer: Mafia Stout, subtitled "A beer as black as our hearts!"
As is my usual custom, I played group photographer, and I have a site up with pictures. However, as the pictures are just Mafiaites having fun, I'll not put a link here.
I competed in Union Pacific, Santa Fe Trails, Medici, B-17, The Kaiser's Pirates, and Robo Rally. My best finish was #5 in Kaiser's Pirates. I also took in several seminars and many demos of games with which I was unfamiliar. The Mafia overall scored big, as it usually does. I believe our final tally was six 1st-places. The plaques in our game room commemorating world championships will grow accordingly.