Random Inc presents a Phenomenon Labs games convention

What's a Phenomenon?

Phenomenon 2009 is a games convention. Its goal is to provide exciting, creative, imaginative, challenging and fun games, including roleplaying and miniatures. Pheno is intended to extend the roleplaying and miniatures community in Canberra — to provide a place where you can relax, chat, make new friends, play games both familiar and unfamiliar, and otherwise do stuff you wouldn't normally do in a weekend.

Are you new to conventions?

Games conventions ('Cons') offer us all a chance to try out different styles of games and different systems, to swap ideas and meet other people who are as crazy as we are share our interests.

You don't have to have a team!

Pheno's mob accountants and crooked bookmakers will schedule your games before the Con individual entries. Because most games are designed for five players, part-filled teams will be really keen to recruit you. This is a fabulous way to meet new friends and try out new games.

If at any point you're not sure what's going on, ask an organiser. They're Don Morpho's Made Morphs and are always happy to help you out.

Can I write a game for the con?

Yes. We'd love you to. Whether you've never written for a convention before, or you've been doing it since before dice were invented, we'd love to hear from you. Of course, you will need to ask Don Morpho for this favour, and at some future date he will come to you to ask a favour of you in return. You can find the paperwork here.

Phenomenon history

The Old Country

In the late 1980s Necronomicon was born to raise money to compensate an early CanCon organiser for the theft of their computer at a CanCon. It raised more than enough—enough in fact, to seed a second Con during the year in Canberra. That convention is Phenomenon, since Necronomicon stayed in Sydney.

Phenomenon was created at a meeting in late 1993. The first Phenomenon was arranged to be held at Karabar High School (later referred to as "No Hoper High" in a game run at another convention...), in Queanbeyan, NSW. At the time, ACT school prices were fixed by the local government and would've cost Pheno about 10 times the amount it paid for Karabar, so the alleged Canberra con was held in New South Wales.

Sailing to the Land of Opportunity

In its second year Phenomenon was also held at Karabar High School but after that it was helped with a venue by the ANU Roleplaying Society (ANURPS). So, from 1996 to 2002, Phenomenon was held at the ANU, with one exception.

Hell's Kitchen

In January 1999 CANCON ran for the 21st time. For financial reasons they were seriously considering not running any roleplaying events. Phenomenon agreed to run the roleplaying portion of CANCON 99, in January, and also ran Recon in August. Recon was organised as a one-off event of previously run convention games to allow a small but fun second convention for Canberra.

In 2000, Necromicon ran at Easter, instead of its usual October, due to the Sydney Olympics running at the same time. Pheno decided to run in Necro's normal timeslot to offer people an excuse to leave Sydney during the closing ceremony.

In 2001 Pheno moved to follow Necronomicon, in December. Its preferred date (first weekend in December) was not available at the ANU and so it had to settle on mid-December.

In 2002 Pheno returned to its old time of August to spread the warmth in a Canberra winter.

Doin' Business

2003 saw Pheno breaking from the script to retake the Queen's Birthday long weekend in June! It also ran for the first time at Daramalan High. This was also the 10th Phenomenon.

2004 Pheno celebrated the Weird Science that brought it to its 11th year of roleplaying.

In 2005 Pheno saluted the Empire On Which The Sun Never Sets, with a spot of Dickensian duality and steam-powered conspiracy.

In 2006 , Pheno speculated wildly on the counterfactual, with Unwritten Earths!

In 2007, Pheno returned to its soapbox roots, with a guaranteed 200% more fun.

In 2008, Chairman Morph leads a Glorious Phenomenon Revolution!

And in 2009, Don Morpho sends the troops to mattresses as the State declares Phenobition!