Building Better Board games Together

Unpub 8 F.A.Q. – UPDATED

When can I buy tickets?

Tickets for all play tester levels are still available! Don’t miss out!


Can I get into Unpub to play games without a ticket?

A walk-in playtest? All are welcome starting on Friday, March 23rd at 3pm, and continuing on Saturday March 24th, from 10am to 7pm, and on Sunday March 25th, from 10am to 2pm. Any other time is considered open gaming, with the hall closing officially at 7pm on Sunday. Any other time, including Designer Day, requires purchasing a Designer or VIP ticket.


What are the differences between all the types of tickets?

Designer Table – ($60) Designer Tables are a bit different this year. All tables are considered TAG tables. So each table purchased comes with 2 designer tickets and 1 table for two consecutive 4-hour blocks. Designers are permitted to purchase one table in each BLOCK, thus locking in a full event table. Two tables within the same BLOCK is not permissible. Designer tickets also guarantee two tickets for the Unpub Mixer on Thursday, March 22nd at 7pm.

VIP Playtester – ($25) VIP Playtester ticket holders have access to all events and benefits of a designer ticket holder, but do not have access to a designer table. VIP Playtesters will also be invited to attend the Unpub Mixer on Thursday, March 22nd at 7pm. One ticket guarantees one admittance.

Registered Playtester –  ($5) Registered playtesters have the same access as a general playtester, see below, but include a printed name tag and guaranteed Unpub gift.

General Playtester – (FREE) General playtesters have free admission to the playtesting events and open gaming.

As in years past, every submission of a feedback form via the site, IOS app, or Android app, will count as one entry into a drawing for free games to take home!


What are the time frames for the tables?

In the past,TAG tables have been split into AM/PM or PM/AM shifts. This year, we worked to form a schedule with less change over time, which also means less time a designer has to spend picking up or taking down his or her game. We have dubbed the new tag table times as BLOCK 1 and BLOCK 2. When purchasing a ticket, designers will be able to select from these two options unless one has sold out.

BLOCK 1: Friday March 23rd from 3pm to 7pm and Saturday March 24th from 10am to 2pm

BLOCK 2: Saturday March 24th from 3pm to 7pm and Sunday March 25th from 10am to 2pm

Obviously, if a BLOCK 1 and a BLOCK 2 ticket has been purchased, that designer will set up on Friday and break down on Sunday! Purchasing a table in each BLOCK is permissible, but purchasing more than one table in one BLOCK is not. This will not be an option when ticket sales roll out on 8/8 @8! We strongly discourage designers from attempting to play test two games simultaneously as feedback has shown it devalues the experiences of the players and the designers.


Why the switch to all TAG tables? I can’t get a full event table?

Having all TAG tables allows more designers the opportunity to share their games. It also allows for less change over of tables, which was a request from designers on the post Unpub 7 survey. Technically, one table from each BLOCK may be purchased to obtain a full event game table. There are 65 total tables, which means 130 potential designers will have spots. Tables cost $60 each.


Are there any perks for buying a table in each BLOCK?

While there is no discount for purchasing a table in each BLOCK, a full event table table will allow access for three designers total. When purchasing tickets, Designer 1 on BLOCK 1 and BLOCK 2 must be the same, with designer 2 being the variable ticket.


Do Designer VIPs have Full Convention Tables?

Yes. The 7 VIP Designers have tables for the entire convention. These 7 VIPs are:
Diane Sauer, Matt Wolfe, Peter Gousis, Josh Tempkin, Nick Ferris, Garrett Herder, and Travis Watkins


Can I buy a table and have someone else run my game at Unpub 8?

If you provide a capable surrogate to instruct your game and gather feedback, we won’t stop you. We will not provide manpower or womanpower, aka Unpub Staff for you. 


Can I have my game blind playtested?

While we believe blind playtesting is important, we do not believe Unpub is the place for blind playtesting. The draw of our event is having designers involved in the teaching and playing of the games. This is a better experience for the players.  We are frequently asked this question and are looking into how we can make blind testing work within the community, but Unpub 8 is not the venue to try and have your game blind playtested.


How does the waitlist work?

The waitlist will become available at 3:00pm on Friday, March 23. You must be present to sign up on the waitlist. VIP Playtesters will be granted first access to any available tables. Once a table becomes available, we will text the next individual on the list and that designer will have fifteen minutes to respond and claim the table. After fifteen minutes, we will move to the next designer on the list. A designer will be moved to the bottom of the list if no response was given. There are no empty tables, if you see an empty table, we know about it!


What happens if I need to cancel my ticket? Can I get a refund?


The deadline for refunds is November 30, 2017 at 11:59pm ET. As of December 1, 2017 at midnight, no refunds will be given. Designers are not permitted to sell their tables to someone else or transfer it for a refund. The refund must be requested through the TableTop Events Page. 


Is there a block of rooms available?

Why of course! Hotel room blocks are available at the Delta Hotel in Hunt Valley, MD, for $129.00 a night plus tax. Double and single bed rooms are available on a first come first serve basis. When reserving your room, please make sure to use the code: UG1

Delta Hotels Baltimore Hunt Valley

245 Shawan Road, Hunt Valley, MD, 21031

(410) 785-7000


Can I take the Light Rail still?

Hunt Valley is a little longer of a ride from BWI, but worth it as you don’t have as far to walk! our friends from points north of Baltimore, hope hopefully it is six in one and a half dozen in the other! For schedules and up-to-date information, please visit the Maryland Transit Authority


Is there a special guest yet?

We had a ton of suggestions from the post Unpub 7 survey and are elated to share that our special guest this year is Matt Leacock, designer of  Forbidden Island, Forbidden Desert, and a little game, you probably have not heard of, called Pandemic.


Any ideas for panels yet?

Once again, the post Unpub 7 survey results rocked our world this year. Two definite panels have been determined, and we are still mulling around choices for a third. “Pitch Perfect” will host industry leaders who will share some tricks and tips for how to pitch your game to potential publishers. “The Art of the Game” will share ways in which you can use artists and graphic designers to help better your game.


What about deadlines for getting my game in the program?

The program will be completely digital this year. This allows for designers to request the addition or removal of a game at any point during the convention. A catalog of games, pooled from those registered on the Unpub site, will be available at the front desk, and around the hall for playtesters to review when looking for a game to play. All games posted to the Unpub site will also be available on the IOS app and the Android app (coming soon).


Are children allowed to attend Unpub 8?

Children of any age are welcome to attend and playtest games. Usually there are a few games for children under the age of 10, but the majority are for players over the age of 10. Children must be supervised at all times. Unpub staff are not responsible for unattended children, unless they are lost. Then they will be cared for and will be given a cookie and a puppy. 

Author: Darrell Louder

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