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How to make a Good Demo?

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Guys (and gals) I need a little help... In October I'm planning to do a demo to Malifaux in a local GameCon. Is something that people demands to me from a long time ago, so I think that is just time to do it...

I want that the demo will be a total success. There will be boxes and blisters available to sell also, so I want that every one that proves the game comes to him/her house with a new Crew... :P

I (and my collaborators) have a few ideas:

- Two different (at least) Crews, fully painted.

- Play with band boxes, if possible. Try to avoid things such 'Tina with spiders or Cerberus...

- A game board with appropriate scenography.

- A quick reference sheet, game markers and aids.

- Obviously, a good knowledgement about rules and game mechanics.

This is a good base, I think... but I need your advice; you have been making demos since almost an year, so if you could give us any advice... I have a few questions, but I will thank anything that you can tell me about demos...

And about the questions:

- Is there any combination of Crews that result in a boring demo? We have Cult of December, Ortega's, the Gremlim Crew, Redchapel Gang, M&SU and Vickys.

- Prepared scenario or flip to mission as always?

I think that is enough... If a have more questions, be sure that I come here again :P

Thanks in advance for your answers... :)

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Just some of my thoughts and ideas;

A demo should be quick and get the gist of the game flowing. One maybe two turns is all that should be demo's, hopefully you will have a lot of people that want to flip so you will need to get them into it. Demo's should be a teaser, they need to get into the game and then learn it at the game shop.

Fully painted miniatures are mandatory, Excellent painted miniatures a must, but not too good, or the folks that have never tried might get discouraged when they find they have to be painted. (Mine are by no means museum quality but they are good, So I was told). You need to stress the hobby side and the fun of making the mini's the players "own". By all means use boxed sets and decks of cards for the demo. You want to show them the ease of getting into the system.

Good terrain. Again the hobby aspect of homemade terrain. A piece of felt over a book and some horrible trees ain't gonna cut it!

Make up some counters, if required by the crews, get some aquarium marbles for soul stones, little things that add to the game.

I would forgo the player aids and charts, you want to get the players into the game flipping, shooting, slashing, tearing and cheating fate, not looking over charts. Though one to keep YOU on track would be helpful.

Do not flip for a scenario. Have it ready to go. Shuffle, draw and flip!

If you have another assistant he/she can assist the newbie, and show them some tips.

Make it fast and let the game sell itself. Hopefully you will have many people looking and watching, and if you make them wait too long to get in and try they might just wander off never to return. An assistant that can get these people a crew and explain the basics while they wait is very helpful.

You must absolutely know the rules and understand what is going on! Flip the cards not the rule book! Though I always have mine on hand and use the charts in the book, shows customers what it is and what a great player aid it is as well as the awesome story line.

Two turns is about all you can do at a busy demo. Then allow them to look at the available crews and all the cool stuff, wipe off the drool and accept orders or make the sale.

I am sure more people will add better advice.

Good Luck! Have fun!

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