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Logistics Report: So Say We All

Mission Date: 2023

Logistics Report Authors: Tristan Cliff & Iolande Diamantis

Game 1

For fans of modern sci fi there are few more powerful thematic worlds than the universe of Battlestar Galactica, specifically the recent (mid-2000s) Ronald D. Moore reimagining. Of course, where a cool theme exists then so too will likely a megagame emerge, and this is very true for BSG; famous in Megagame circles is the well regarded Den of Wolves by John Mizon. However, when looking for our games in 2023 we really wanted to run at least one Australian-designed megagame, and to our luck there is a BSG inspired game designed by our friends Justin Delaney and James Archer of Adelaide and Sydney Megagamers respectively; So Say We All.

Upon hearing of the game, we first reached out to our compatriots at Sydney towards the middle of 2022 and begun the long journey to game day. The game had only been run once before, during 2019 in Woolongong; for our benefit, designers Justin and James broke down the process of creating the game on the Great Game podcast. We met with the two of them to discuss our plans for the game - namely to run it twice given our community's size and expected appetite for a BSG game. We also chatted through the logistics of this (what state the game was in, licensing agreements, etc. If you are interested in the logistical path to running a game, we have a guide coming soon). Ultimately, all the right people were happy and the game was locked in to be our second game for 2023.

From scheduling to game day, there's always a lot of work required: materials have to be acquired, registration communications written, tickets sold, and merchandise designed. As usual, we like to bring in a few friendly faces to help with the endless tasks. Hugo was a mastermind in design and writing and Jess' thoughtful approach to materials made the process incredibly seamless. We are so lucky to be supported by our creative and dedicated community members, and are particularly grateful to Jess and Hugo for their help with this game.

Now to game day.

It's hard to find a good venue that is not only accessible (both on a micro and macro scale) but also suits our requirements when it comes to capacity and space activation. Richmond Theatrette was a new one for us and it fit the bill well. The ability for us to hide the Ashiva away on the stage was a must, so that when they emerged into the room it was an event that would make the fleet have to react.

As an organiser, you dread showing up to a game unprepared. Worse, is when you show up prepared but something you had lined up falls through. For Game 1, it was our our projector. You really don't expect a projector to break after you've tested it that very morning. But just our luck, three minutes after being turned on, the bulb goes out and we are without a timer for the day. This resulted in a hurried callout on discord before a lifesaving rush across the city by a control member to get their own projector from home, resulting in us being a hand short for setup.

On the other hand, we adore seeing the creative ways you all commit to the vibes of a game. We loved the costumes that each team brought to the day! It makes our day when each team has a distinct theme, even if it's just an aligned colour scheme. However, some teams went over and above; special shoutout to the Duke Escorial in game 1, who really took 'Space RyanAir' to heart with their duct-tape lapels.

Control Highlights

The look of terror on players' faces when a control member - or even more the dreaded Shiv - would walk up to them was palpable. I can't recall a game evoking such an emotional response from players so reliably.
I loved adopting new players to the Ashiva team throughout the day, both infiltrators and alike. But nothing will beat finding out the Shiv had been assassinated in the final round.

Game 2

We had the luxury of three weeks between games. Regular event organisers might consider using that time to recover and relax. But there's no rest for the wicked, so we worked through a few (ed. nearly 20!) modifications to the game. Particularly we wanted the Ashiva to have some more concrete goals to work towards rather than just 'destroy all humans' and to make sure that epic space combat between 14 parties felt fun and fast paced, while also being manageable for our game facilitators.

Game day 2 included a back up projector (that worked without a hitch). We also had access to an additional space for our Ashiva players which didn't leave them in a room entirely lit in backstage-blue. A potential side effect here was that their isolation became isolationism as they colonised their own planet in lieu of chasing down humanity.

Props were the name of the game on day 2. The Constantine may have been repping full cultist makeup and outfits but it was the Hanging Garden's food distribution set up that really wowed us, complete with government style paperwork.

It all came full circle when the designers themselves flew all the way from Adelaide and Sydney to play as the Rongyao. We always love hosting our interstate friends, but seeing Justin and James get to play the game they dreamt up was pretty special. They got to experience the full range of emotions from feeling betrayed and being accused of betrayal simultaneously, as is the joy of an infiltrator mechanic.

Control Highlights

I loved watching players excuse each others suspicious behaviour. It was only matched by watching players manufacture suspicion and follow through on sabotaging either, and being able to facilitate that growing tension knowing they were actually on the same team.

My most memorable moment? Definitely telling one of the Infiltrators that the only way to prove their devotion to the Ashiva was to walk out of an airlock.

As you can see, we are constantly iterating and changing things from game to game, and year to year. So Say We All was an awesome opportunity for us to lean into one of our big organisational goals - running Australian games.

Do you have a story/memorable moment from So Say We All? Email to be featured in our after-action report.

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