Author Archives: Pat Milligan



Where to begin? RetroGameCon 2016 was a blast! We’re sore, tired, and physically and emotionally drained, but we had a phenomenal time and we are incredibly thankful to everyone who came out and supported our show this past weekend.

Some shows are all about numbers, and we did host thousands of gamers from New York and beyond, but we mostly want to talk about PEOPLE. We are grateful to so many generous and fantastic individuals. Our staff of volunteers ALL worked incredibly hard and went above and beyond, and are some of the best people we’ve had the pleasure of working with. We owe them everything!

Thanks to our fantastic vendors, our venue The Oncenter and their staff, our incredible artists and exhibitors, extremely generous sponsors Microgame Play and Trade, Play the Game Read the Story, GameShell, Sharkey’s Bar & Grill and Dave & Buster’s, supporters, and donors, the Syracuse Society of Geeks, Syracuse Smash / Cusetown Beatdown, Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital, Wizards Pinball, CNY Pinball, Buffalo Pinball, Kirwan’s Game Store, Syracuse Crunch, The Strong Museum / International Center for the History of Electronic Games, Sprite Lovers, Haranshire, and more.

We’d also like to extend a huge thank you to our awesome, accommodating, and gracious special guests The Gaming Historian, Pat the NES Punk, Thor Aackerlund, Scott Zientek, Rerez, Pete Dorr, Joe Granato, Jeffrey Wittenhagen, Chipocrite, The World is Square, Sammus, You Bred Raptors?, Destinyamber, smzeldarules, Bec’s Cosplay Wonderland, Chibi Kitsune Cosplay, Morgul Cosplay, Vicious Cosplay, Kara’s Cosplay, and DJ Silenze.

We also feel the need once again to thank YOU, the people who came out and attended RetroGameCon 2016. It was our pleasure to host you, and we hope you had a good time. We know that the couple who got engaged at RGC did – congratulations (we didn’t catch your names)!

We’re already thinking about next year, and ways we can create an even better experience for our attendees. We strive for constant improvement and we will be creating an attendee survey soon (and of course, we will be giving out some random prizes to those who help us out by answering the survey).

In the meantime, we’ll leave you with a little thing we made–it was in your convention program–to let you know that WE WILL BE BACK next year to show Syracuse how fun a celebration of video games can be!


As you can imagine, things are crazy at RGC headquarters getting ready for RetroGameCon 2016. We wanted to take a moment to talk about some specific details for this weekend:

SHOW VENUE: The Nicholas J Pirro Convention Center (Oncenter) at 800 S. State Street, Syracuse, NY 13202


Magic: The Gathering 2K tournament participants will register and pay the entry fee at registration.

VIP TICKET & TICKET PRE-ORDERS will pick up their badges using their photo ID at registration. If someone else purchased your tickets for you, you must have either that person with you, or a copy of the receipt/invoice.

PARKING is available in the lot across from the the S. State Street or in the parking garage (follow the signs). Parking is $5.

FOOD: the Oncenter will have two concession stands open. There are also countless great restaurants within a few blocks. No outside food or beverages are allowed.

RE-ENTRY: You may leave and re-enter the building. You must display your attendee badge in order to get back into the Oncenter.




Things to do at RetroGameCon 2016


There are countless activities for gamers of all ages at RetroGameCon, from cosplay contests to ultra-competitive gaming tournaments. Here are some of the things to do at RetroGameCon:

Vendors: Nearly 100 unique vendors with over 200 tables of games, consoles, and art to browse.

Exhibitors: Indie game companies, as well as industry giants like Sony and Nintendo can be found on our exhibition floor

Special Guests: Some of your favorite YouTubers attend RetroGameCon, as well as popular cosplayers and musicians

Cosplay: RetroGameCon features several cosplay contests, including a kids competition, plus other cosplay activities like the Cosplay Dating Game, a costume repair station, and more!

Music: RetroGameCon 2016 is our most music-filled show yet, with musical performances by You Bred Raptors?, The World is Square, Sammus, Chipocrite, and DJ Silenze.

Tournaments: Fighting game tournaments (Street Fighter V / Smash multi-platform) by Syracuse Smash, with game console prizes, a $500 pot bonus, and more! Retro tournaments with awesome prizes & custom trophies in the free play area! Magic: The Gathering 2K, Pokemon, and YuGiOh tournaments sponsored by Kirwan’s Game Store.

Panels: Unique and interesting panel presentations on a variety of gaming-related topics. We spend a lot of time and effort brainstorming and recruiting talented and knowledgeable panelists for this portion of the show.

Console free play (Sponsored by Microgame Play & Trade): Our video game console free play area has over 40 game consoles and TVs with games from all eras for you to try. Our selection for the free play area changes each year!

Tabletop free play (Sponsored by Play The Game, Read the Story): RetroGameCon isn’t just about video games. We have a huge tabletop free play area with a generous lending library, plus staff on hand to help you learn new games! Our tabletop free play area also usually has giveaways and prizes, just for playing games!

Charity: Our featured charity is Extra Life, which helps heal sick kids locally at Children’s Miracle Network hospitals. Our convention features an “Extra Life Stage” where attendees can come play games on a huge 12′ projector screen while being streamed for an internet audience, with free giveaways throughout the show.

Kids Area: RetroGameCon is a family friendly event, and for the little gamers in our lives, we have a place where parents and their kids can participate together in making video game related crafts, coloring, and playing kid-friendly tabletop games. Please note: children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times – we do not provide a day care service. 

The Artemis Spaceship Bridge Simulator (Sponsored by Syracuse Society of Geeks): A Star Trek themed cooperative video game in it’s own room. Each player takes command of a different station aboard a single spaceship!

Pinball (Buffalo Pinball, CNY Pinball Club, Wizard’s Pinball): You can usually find at least a few pinball machines set up at RetroGameCon, sometimes even a high score challenge, a machine or two up for sale, or a live-streamed episode of “Bro, Do You Even Pinball” by Buffalo Pinball!

LARP: A LARP (Live Action Role Play) demo by Haranshire.

Movies: A movie room, featuring FREE showings of award-winning video game documentaries.


Special Guests at RetroGameCon 2016

Did you know that RetroGameCon 2016 will feature our biggest guest list yet? This year, we will be welcoming numerous guests to the show, including YouTubers the Gaming Historian and Pat the NES Punk, 1990 Nintendo World Champion Thor Aackerlund, musical acts Sammus, Chipocrite, DJ Silenze, You Bred Raptors? from NYC, and Squaresoft-inspired 5-piece band The World is Square, plus cosplay special guests!

Many of our special guests will be putting on panel presentations and joining in other special activities. Check out our complete guest list here!

Have you bought your tickets yet? Why wait? They’re available here with a pre-sale discount!


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2016 Ticket Presales Are Live!


Tickets for RetroGameCon 2016 are now available for pre-order!

Weekend passes, single day passes, family weekend passes, and VIP ticket packages are up on our website at a discounted presale rate.

Prices will increase at the door, so get your tickets early!

We’ve got our biggest and best show planned for this year, and can’t wait to experience it with you! See you at RetroGameCon!

RetroGameCon 2016!


Planning is well underway for this year’s TWO-DAY show which will take place on Saturday, November 5th from 10:00AM (9:00AM for VIPs) until 9:00PM and Sunday, November 6th from 10:00AM until 6:00 PM!

This year, RetroGameCon will take place at the Oncenter at 800 S. State Street, Syracuse, NY. During the 2-day show, expect to see over 50,000 square feet of:

  • Vendors, artists, and indie game exhibitors in a huge marketplace
  • A HUGE cosplay contest with $1000 in prizes!
  • Fighting game tournaments
  • Tabletop games including a huge free lending library
  • A Magic the Gathering tournament
  • Great panel presentations
  • A massive video game free play area featuring arcade and pinball machines
  • Special guests including video game celebrities from YouTube and musicians

…and more!

RetroGameCon 2016 is a great way to spend a weekend with thousands of other video game enthusiasts, celebrating all aspects of gamer culture. The show will be filled with activities for kids and adults of all ages.

We’ll have many more announcements coming soon. Stay tuned for announcements of special guests, panels, and other events!


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