25 Years of Intercon

This was originally an insert in the Intercon J program book. Intercon J happened in March 2010, which was during the 25th anniversary year of the Intercon convention. At Intercon J, a memory wall was set up for attendees to record their thoughts.

This year is the 25th year of the all-LARP convention we've come to know as Intercon. While it's nearly impossible to give proper credit to the hundreds of people that have contributed to the convention and the art and practice of Live-Action Role Playing, we can take a moment and look at a partial history of Intercon conventions.

In 1982, the Harvard Society for Interactive Literature, later just SIL, was formed. This group, along with the MIT Assassins Guild, was one of the original groups doing theatre-style LARP. In 1986, they held their first convention, SiLicon I, and would soon produce a magazine, Metagame, the first LARP magazine anywhere. SiLicon would move from the Boston area down the east coast to the Baltimore area with the intention of finding a stable venue.

However, organizational issues resulted in the fracturing of SIL and the creation of the Interactive Literature Foundation (ILF) that would continue to produce all-LARP conventions, the next one being in New Jersey. However, logistical difficulties kept most of the next several conventions in the early '90s close to or in Maryland.

At that time, the conventions consisted almost entirely of full-weekend LARPs, that being the state of the art at the time. In 1992, Intercon 7.5 was the first convention with all shorter-form LARPs, which proved to be popular. Intercon 9.5, in 1994, was basically indistinguishable from Intercon conventions today. Intercon conventions in the late 90s soon provided a stable set of short-form LARPs and the opportunities for community and networking that a convention provides. Meanwhile, full-length theatre-style LARPs continued in other venues. Both would fight the rise of vampire LARP, which also happened at this time, threatening to eclipse everything else.

In 1998, an Intercon convention, Intercon the Thirteenth, returned to the Boston area, thanks to the efforts of a lot of people, many of whom are still involved with the convention today. This turned out to be a wise move as full-length LARP was becoming less popular, while a number of strong campaign LARPs had swept the Baltimore area, reducing the player base for an Intercon convention there. On the other hand, the Boston area had a strong player base that was largely free of other, longer-form opportunities.

While the Boston-area convention was being established, logistical and financial difficulties in 2000, including the collapse of Metagame magazine, led to the establishment of the Live Action Roleplayers Association (LARPA) which would license the Intercon name for all-LARP conventions, allowing local organizations to produce them. This would lead to another period of growth with two conventions: one in the Boston area and one in the Baltimore area, with the "annual" convention to be switched between them.

That success led to even more success and an Intercon convention was licensed in New Jersey, thanks to the efforts of two different local groups. For various reasons the New Jersey conventions ended quietly and, more recently, the Baltimore area convention is on hiatus.

Today, there are other all-LARP conventions around the world, some inspired by Intercon conventions, others developed independently. But the Intercon convention can look at a 25 year history of adaption and innovation in making the all-LARP convention possible and popular. With the Boston convention still thriving and, with the move to a larger venue, hopefully Intercon conventions will continue for another 25 years!

Convention Location Dates
SiLicon I Woburn, MA 21-23 March, '86
SiLicon II Danvers, MA 27-29 March, '87
SiLicon 2.5 (Unofficial) New Jersey Nov, '87
SiLicon III Danvers, MA 11-13 March, '88
SiLicon 3.5 (Unofficial) Morristown, NJ 7-9 Oct, '88
SiLicon IV Philadelphia, PA 7-9 April, '89
SiLicon V New Haven, CT 6-8 April, '90
SiLicon VI Annapolis, MD 8-10 March, '91
Intercon VII Edison, NJ 13-15 March, '92
Intercon 7.5 Fairfax, MD 4-6 Dec, '92
Intercon VIII Hunt Valley, MD 12-14 March, '93
Intercon IX Dulles, MD 11-13 March, '94
Intercon 9.5 Hunt Valley, MD 7-10 Oct, '94
Intercon X Ocean City, MD 10-12 March, '95
Intercon 10.5 Timonium, MD 6-9 Oct, '95
Intercon XI Timonium, MD 1-3 March, '96
Intercon 11.5 Mt. Laurel, NJ 11-14 Oct, '96
Intercon XII Hunt Valley, MD 21-23 March, '97
Intercon 12.5 Edison, NJ 17-19 Oct, '97
Intercon XIII Natick, MA 13-15 March, '98
Intercon 13.5 Timonium, MD 2-4 Oct, '98
Intercon XIV Natick, MA 12-14 March, '99
Intercon 14.5 Cherry Hill, NJ 16-18 July, '99
Intercon Millennium Timonium, MD 31 Dec, '99 - 2 Jan, '00
Intercon XV Chelmsford, MA 10-12 March, '00
Intercon 15.5 Timonium, MD 30 June - 2 Jul, '00
Intercon IAGO
(aka Intercon Millennium II)
Maryland '00-'01 (Cancelled)
Intercon A Chelmsford, MA 9-11 March, '01
Intercon XVI Timonium, MD 19-21 Oct, '01
Intercon B Chelmsford, MA 8-10 March, '02
Intercon XVII Timonium, MD 4-6 Oct, '02
Intercon C Chelmsford, MA 29 Feb - 2 March, '03
Intercon Gazebo
(Intercon XVIII)
Piscataway, NJ 13-15 July, '03
Intercon D
(Secretly Intercon XIX)
Chelmsford, MA 12-14 March, '04
Dexcon 7
(Intercon Northeast 2004)
East Brunswick, NJ 14-18 July, '04
Intercon Mid-Atlantic 2004 Timonium, MD 8-10 Oct, '04
Intercon E Chelmsford, MA 4-6 March, '05
Dexcon 8
(Intercon Northeast 2005)
East Brunswick, NJ 13-17 July, '05
Intercon Mid-Atlantic 2005
(Intercon XX)
New Castle, DE 7-9 Oct, '05
Intercon F Chelmsford, MA 3-5 March, '06
Dexcon 9
(Intercon Northeast 2006)
East Brunswick, NJ 12-16 July, '06
Intercon Mid-Atlantic 2006
(Intercon XXI)
Rehoboth, DE 17-19 Nov, '06
Intercon G Chelmsford, MA 2-4 March, '07
Intercon Mid-Atlantic 2007
(Intercon XXII)
Rehoboth, DE 16-18 Nov, '07
Intercon H Chelmsford, MA 29 Feb - 2 March, '08
Intercon Mid-Atlantic 2008
(Intercon XXIII)
Rehoboth, DE 14-16 Nov, '08
Intercon I Chelmsford, MA 6-8 March, '09
Intercon Mid-Atlantic 2009
(Intercon XXIV)
Germantown, MD 23-25 Oct, '09 (Cancelled)
Intercon J Chelmsford, MA 12-14 March, '10

The Intercon name is licensed from the Live Action Roleplayers Association.