Aug. 13-16, GenCon, the annual gaming festival, will once again bring thousands of game enthusiasts and live-action role players and video aficionados and board game partisans and card gamers together to celebrate all things gaming-related. Just think: lots of people in costumes
playing games of all kinds, a kind of Halloween in August sort of shindig. The gathering is held at the Indiana Convention Center, 100 S. Capital Ave., so if you aren't attending, it's a great weekend to go downtown and peoplewatch. For those interested in going, there are lots of art and games and films and symposiums, plus a host of writers whose Web sites are named things like starwarsjesus.com and brazenserpentchronicles.com. For a complete lineup and registration information: www.gencon.com/2009/indy.
GenCon brings with it a host of industrial and electronic bands and DJs playing after-parties throughout downtown. "The Afterparty" (10 p.m., $3 cover) at The Ugly Monkey, 373 S. Illinois St., will run from Aug. 13-15 and feature aggro, industrial, electro and noise DJs, including locals DJ Copper Top, DJ Krazy Karoline, DJ Sunny and DJ Badfairie. Wisconsin-based live electronic band The Gothsicles and industrial one-man-band The Dark Clan will play an after-party at Radio Radio, 1119 E. Prospect St., Aug. 15 (10 p.m., $5). Appropriately, the lead singer of the Gothsicles will wear a belt with a buckle made from a Nintendo controller (the 8-bit version, of course).
Also embracing the Gen Con excitement is the Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, featuring The Cursed Chateau
. Artist/curator Timothy Hutchings has collected a disparate band of contemporary artmakers, including performance artists, digital artists, sculptors, painters, musicians and various in-betweens, all united by a direct or indirect relationship to role playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons
. Hutchings placed them into the unaccustomed role of illustrators for The Cursed Chateau
, a role playing game adventure book written by James Maliszewski. Among the artists contributing are the old school game illustrators Pixie Bledsaw and the renowned Erol Otus. An opening reception will be held Aug. 14, 6-9 p.m. iMOCA located at 340 N. Senate Ave. The show will remain on view through Sept. 26. For more info: 317-634-6622 or www.indymoca.org.