Con Quest: IRL

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Hank Whitson and his wife Grace have been attendees at Dragon Con consecutively for the past three years. Prior to coming this year, they were talking about how cons are similar to MMOs and started kicking around the idea of questing in real life. They talked with their friends about their idea and the support they received made the decision easy.

Hank took to Reddit about a month prior to Dragon Con to introduce the idea to those subscribed to the Dragon Con subreddit. The response was phenomenal. They had originally decided to create 50 quests, but due to the response, they ended up with 200 completely unique quests. Themes were chosen for purely selfish reasons based on Hank’s and Grace’s interests and ranged from gaming to sci-fi, fantasy to comics, and even anime.

In addition to meeting more people, this gave the couple an opportunity to work on their cosplaying skills. Dressed as generic MMORPG characters and going by NPC character names like Quest Mistress and Reward Rogue, Hank and Grace used Twitter to communicate where they could be found. Players were to find the Quest Mistress, complete the quest, and find the Reward Rogue to show proof and receive a prize.

Quests typically took the form of snapping a picture of someone cosplaying a particular character and ranged from simple to difficult. The most difficult quest was to build a RPG team that you would typically have when gaming. When asked if there was a task they thought was extremely simple but ended up being difficult, they laughed saying, “The quest was called ‘This is a cinch’ and the player was to find someone dressed in a corset. The Quest Mistress was dressed in a corset.” One of their favorite quests was to take a picture after donating blood at the Dragon Con blood drive. They were not sure anyone would actually go through with that, but they did.

Of the new friends Hank and Grace made, one of them decided to follow suit and started putting together her own quests. This was a great opportunity as, in the future, the couple is hoping to have quest coverage for the three main days while still being able to attend panels themselves. This year, there was no questing on Saturday while they attended events.

To learn more about ConQuesting at Dragon Con, reach out to Hank on Twitter, @Sarcasmancer, or on Reddit, TheSarcasmancer. Follow the fun with #ConQuestingDC2016.

About the author

Colleen Sisler Colleen Callahan Sisler is Digital Marketing and Print Production Manager for a Metro Atlanta agency specializing in adult beverage marketing for the national on-premise sector. She lives in Holly Springs with her husband, their son, and their two rescue pooches. They are currently embarking on a minimalist lifestyle and are in search of the perfect tiny home while purging 20+ years of accumulated memorabilia. Starting with A Wrinkle In Time and never looking back, Colleen is a huge fan of science fiction, fantasy, and the supernatural. Favorite time burners are anything by Joss Whedon, the entire Outlander universe, the occasional Neil Gaiman rant, and as many geeky TV shows as she can lay her eyes on. Recently, Colleen has decided to go back to her first love - writing. Since the third grade, creating neighborhood newsletters with a typewriter and copying them with a mimeograph machine (remember those?), the writing flame has been kept alive through short stints in industry magazines, copywriting for marketing projects, and randomly posting in now defunct personal blogs. Writing for the Daily Dragon (she's a newb!) is the first stepping stone in a two-year plan to break into the literary world.

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