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PHENOMENON 2021

"The Journey  (...Continues)"

1, 2, 3, 4 October
Daramalan College, ACT

Pheno News

September 2021 | Tina Ryan and Phenomenon Labs, Inc. Presents.....

Anomaly (Mark I)

Anomaly - something that deviates from what is standard, normal or expected

Please join us for an anomalous online role playing convention: now open at Anomaly (Mark I).


July 2021 | Welcome to Pheno 2021!

Weight the anchor! Hoist the mainsail! Feed the sea-gerbil! Set course two points north for adventure!

Keep up to date with Pheno news

Keep a weather eye on the Pheno FB group.

Games and fun at Pheno

Phenomenon is a roleplaying games convention (but there may be other stuff as well).

The team (tabletop) games are the most traditional kind. Freeforms (LARPS) are live action games, more like improv theatre. The Triptych and Diptych are our showcase games, sets of three and two games that teams complete to compete in to get their names on the perpetual trophies. But you can play any of them you want—they're pretty cool.

Other fun includes a discussion panel, and a costume contest. (In most years there is also a Sunday night banquet, but for obvious reasons, not this year.)

So what's a Phenomenon anyway?

Phenomenon 2021 contains a wide range of exciting, creative, imaginative, and fun roleplaying games for your enjoyment. Pheno aims to extend the roleplaying 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 on a weekend.

What's a roleplaying game (RPG)?

Do you remember playing 'Let's pretend' when you were a younger? Same thing, only with more rules. Have you ever watched a movie or TV show, or read a book, where you wanted to be a person in that setting? Or one of the main characters? Did you ever want to show them how it would be done properly? That's roleplaying.

In most RPGs:

  • You have an invented persona, your character, who participates in a fictitious world via your interactions with the other players in the game.
  • One player makes up the world and arbitrates any challenges the world may throw at your character, or conflicts between your character and other characters. We tend to call this heroic soul a GM (short for game moderator or mistress or master or Morph).
  • There is no winner. You play to invent/tell a shared story and to have a good time with your friends. When everyone has a good time, everyone wins.

Although RPGs have no winners and losers, most Pheno games are judged competitively. The GMs (who mostly, have written their own games) are looking for the players that best depict their characters and that entertain them—and the players you're with—the best. They will give trophies or certificates to these players at The Prizegiving on the last day.

But that's only one aspect to playing in games at a convention like Pheno. If you have fun, if you meet new people, if you laugh, you cry, you swap toasts with your (fictitious) new arch-enemy, then you're doing it right.

So what now?

Check out the games on offer.

Pre-registering and teams

Pheno encourages players to pre-register to play games via this site (the rego form will go live in mid August). This helps us schedule games and make sure we have enough GMs and rooms.

You don't have to have a team!

Even though many games are designed for teams of 5 (or so), you can enter as an individual and Pheno's Celestial Scheduling Astrolabe will put you into team games before the Con. Freeforms are all individual entry, so no problem there.

This helps everybody: part-filled teams will be really keen to meet/recruit you. This is a fabulous way to meet new friends and try out new games.

Can I write a game for Pheno?

Yes. We'd love you to! While we have games decided for 2021, we will be looking for more games in future years. Pheno welcomes and encourages new designers. There is even a shiny New Designer award .

We are also always looking for excellent folks to help run Pheno.

Pheno is Inclusive

Phenomenon does not discriminate against any group, race, ethnicity, creed, ethos, sexuality, gender, pronoun, or species. We ask that you do as you would be done by at Pheno.