UMass Lowell Fall 2021 Magicon Event Sneak Peek: All About Pizza & Gaming

(Photo courtesy of D6 dice are often used for Magic The Gathering games and tournaments, as well as other MGK games

Evan sisler
Connector editor

Starting this Friday, November 19, UMass Lowell’s Master’s Gaming Konnection (MGK) will be hosting its biannual gaming convention, Magicon. A three-day, all-in-person, free play event, Magicon will take place in the University Crossing Club Hub, on the second and third floors.

The host of the event, MGK, is the UMass Lowell Gaming Club, dedicated to board games, card games, tabletop role-playing and video games. They organize meetings on Thursdays at 6 p.m. and welcome new members.

Magicon is an event focused on games of all kinds but mainly on board games and card games.

Starting at 5 p.m. Friday, the club will host an eight-hour Warhammer 40k Killteam tournament, open to UMass Lowell students and alumni. Warhammer 40k Killteam is a wargame, tabletop board game where players control a group of soldiers in a sci-fi battle simulation.

On Saturday at 12:00 p.m. there will be a Yu-Gi-Oh Sealed Structure Deck tournament, followed by a dice board building event at 4:00 p.m. and a late Halloween D&D one-shot starting at 7:00 p.m.

Sunday, there are two Magic the Gathering “cube style” tournaments, at 12 noon and 6 p.m.

In addition to the planned events, Jake Scalfani-Lowe, who is an accounting student, MGK officer and host of the Fall 2021 Magicon, said there will be other events. “In addition to our scheduled matches, we also have events and matches that are not always scheduled. Jackbox Games, Smash, and other board games from our large collection are some of the things we play while waiting for a new event to begin.

John Mercer, UMass Lowell alumnus and MGK president of 2020 and spring 2021, spoke about the history of Magicon, “Magicon, from what I understand, has always been about the same thing …. It’s a great excuse to play longer games like Starlight Imperium.

Magicon is open to all UMass Lowell students and alumni. “Often a lot of alumni come during Magicon. Maybe less this year than usual because it is the year after the virtual truce. At least one alumnus is hosting an event this year, ”said Mercer.

In addition, Magicon is free for all participants. Mercer mentions pizza and free games. Funding for the event is provided from the club’s budget and fundraising by selling snacks and drinks at the meetings and the Magicon. Buy-ins for events or tournaments depend on the event organizers. “For example, the Yu-Gi-Oh Sealed Cube, you pay practically $ 10 for the deck you use during the tournament and there is usually a prize at the end for whoever wins … Most events are free. “said Mercer.

Anna Schmidt, first year computer engineering student and member of MGK, expressed interest in the Yu-Gi-Oh tournament, but was unsure whether to participate due to the nature of a “sealed-structure bridge” of the event.

A structure deck is a predefined selection of cards meant to be played right out of the box.

For students wishing to participate in tournaments or events, there is no need to register in advance, events traditionally being on a first come, first served basis. “Even if none of the events interest you, if you like games, video games, card games, whatever, come on… take a look,” says Mercer.

Schmidt said she had both hopes and concerns about the all-in-person nature of the event: “Over the past few years, other people have told me it’s been going pretty well… I hope it will go well this year as well, but with everything that is happening COVID side, it is a bit trendy “.

This is MGK’s first in-person Magicon since the fall semester 2019. Mercer said he hoped there would be good attendance and that he was not too worried about the impact of COVID. -19 on the event. “I don’t think the ever-present COVID will have too much of an effect on attendance because the majority of students are part of the school and will be vaccinated and stuff like that, taking the usual precautions they would take during periods of normal course… It may have an effect on the elders, but most of the elders that I have spoken with are fully vaccinated.

Mercer mentioned Magicon’s goals: “It’s really fair: having fun, playing board games. If you’re having a great weekend, it’s like mission accomplished. He went on to talk about the importance of the event for new students: “I know that for my first year it was one of the highlights of my year. It was really fun that year.

Scalfani-Lowe seems excited about the event and declares that he is welcome to everyone: “Magicon is all about pizza and games!… No event is mandatory, and you can just show up to play board games if you wish. ”

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