Origins for Beginners

I am new to the boardgaming community. And as such, this will be my first boardgaming convention. I'm not really sure what to expect and how to prepare. I have seen "badges" for sale on Origins site. Do I want one of these? My goal is just to wander around and maybe play a few new/old games. Any advice?


but, to gain entrance to the convention itself, you need to have a badge.

(please any Origins regulars jump right in to correct me!)

Badges come in different flavors: Adult, Child, Teacher Hall Pass, Media (for dorks like us)

The badges are good for the length of the con. Looks like they had a 2-day badge, but the cost of the badges go up the closer to the date, so it is actually the same price as the full con badge.

Badges usually get you into the the convention center which will include ALOT of activities. The exhibitor's hall, where all the game companies and publishers will have booths set up. If it is similar to GenCon (which I am fairly certain it is) Many if not most game related booths will have little playtest table or a playtest areas marked off. The exhibitor's hall will close relatively early, so if you want to game into the night there will be open gaming going on in lots of places as well as organized events (like a a Settlers Tournament, etc.).

That's as far as I will stick my neck out without an real experience at Origins. HOpefully I haven't mis-spoken about anything major.

Let me off the hook, Origins Spielers and give him the details!


Somehow I totally missed that the "Badges" were just the admittance fee. Thanks for the quick response. I think I'll have to get a Pre-Registration Badge for Saturday.

I'll see you guys there!


Stephen, everything looked pretty good there. I'll try to add in some more details (I've been going to Origins for 10 years now, but even still...I may not be right on everything).

Josh, it looks like you are planning on just 1 day...for your first convention it will probably be fairly overwhelming. Even Origins which, while still a big show, is not as big as something like GenCon.

In the exhibit hall itself, there should be plenty of places to play some of the newest and shiniest board games out there. If you're looking for older stuff. You'll likely have to sign up for an event. Events typically cost extra, and the events line can be pretty long...especially on Saturday. If you head to you may be able to still pre-reg for some events. I'm not sure about that though, but you can find lists of what is going on. I typically don't play any events.

If you are staying for more than 1 day, and you are looking to play a lot of games. I'd recommend a "Board Room" badge. It's $15 on top of whatever you pay to get into the con. But it gives you access to "The Board Room" run by the Columbus Area Boardgaming Society, where it will just be 24/7 gaming all con long. It should be interesting.

Most of all, have fun! Any more questions...just ask.

*EDIT* Pre-registration closes on Sunday (June 17) according to their website, so if you haven't done so! Unless you want to spend a long time standing in line on site.

I now have my pre-registration Badge for Saturday. See you guys there. :-)

Enjoy the show. I'd say look for me, but I'll just be a morbidly obese guy in a Pink Floyd or Ramones shirt in a sea of morbidly obese guys in Pink Floyd or Ramones shirts :P