Laclede's LAN: Reboot the Midwest Gaming Community
Laclede's LAN: Reboot the Midwest Gaming Community
The Kickstarter may be over – Laclede’s LAN is not!
The Kickstarter may be over – Laclede’s LAN is not! Read more
About this project
Laclede’s LAN is still happening. Thanks in part to the attention brought by this kickstarter we are currently working with some companies to revitalize the Saint Louis LAN Party scene! To directly receive notifications as details are revealed sign up for our newsletter. Additionally, you can reach out and connect to our community via the following:
Thanks for helping us bring back Saint Louis LAN Parties!
Laclede's LAN is a group of computer-gaming enthusiasts who want to reboot the LAN Party community in St. Louis and the Midwest US.
Laclede's LAN is returning with our first public LAN tournament since 2008. While we have continued to host small private LANs, we desire to reboot our 200 person LAN tournaments. This will require sizable upfront costs of $14,000 for the power equipment, network equipment, and infrastructure. Once raised, we will have the gear to host many LANs in the future, with low overhead. We have the tournaments planned, the date set, and the location secured. Your participation in this Kickstarter will reserve your spot and help us buy the equipment our community needs.
TL:DR; (Quick Summary)
Tournaments: Counter-Strike: GO 5v5 Double Elim, League of Legends (3v3, 5v5) Double Elim, Hearthstone, and Minecraft "Triathlon"
Saturday January 3, 2015 at Saint Louis University
About Laclede's LAN:
Laclede's LAN is a group of computer-gaming enthusiasts who have developed our organization over the last 10 years. We are hoping, with your support, to refresh and rebuild the LAN Party community in St. Louis and the Midwest. We have always been about bringing people together in a fun environment to enjoy computer games in a rare way, where you can socially interact with the gamers around you. We have hosted 13 events in the past that all grew upon this idea. While the process of a LAN party might seem simple, there can be significant hurdles to get so many computers organized for competitive tournaments and many hours of gaming in a large location…
Well let’s first start with the basics of what a successful LAN needs:
- 1. Large space for computers and people - Room for 200 gamers and their computers is no simple task, especially when you account for fire code, power availability, room for tables, restrooms, and then finally the availability and cost of such a space. We are working with Saint Louis University (“SLU”) to develop these events and are very grateful that they are accommodating our needs for such a space. Not only have we received permission to host an event in one of the SLU buildings, but we have also mapped out the power outlets and square footage of the entire building to effectively prepare for a large LAN.
- 2. Competitive Gaming tournaments - Most people that are familiar with LAN parties know that the tournaments offered at these parties are really the headline of the event – without good tournaments, it is difficult to have a good LAN. So, we have decided to hold tournaments in League of Legends, Counter Strike: Global Offensive ("CS:GO"), Hearthstone, and Minecraft – all very very well-known games with millions of avid players. Aside from the fact that we have thrown dozens of successful large tournaments at our past events, we are working with high level players and industry gurus on exactly how our tournaments should be structured. While the competitive tournaments are often the headline, casual gaming with friends is a fundamental aspect of LAN parties and we offer lots of game servers for all attendees to enjoy.
- 3. Advanced electrical and network hardware (cords, cables, servers, switches, et al) - Not only do we already own some of these valuable tools (5 high performance servers and a managed gigabit core switch -- woohoo, less money to raise!), but for the equipment that we still need we have already laid out complex floormaps of our power grid and have a reasonably accurate estimate of the cables that will be required to bring clean, safe power to all our attendees and their machines, along with a gigabit backbone network. We have also made contacts at Fabick Caterpillar and SLU to provide the necessary power equipment needed for a large LAN.
- 4. Interesting and compelling sponsorship - We have already reached out to many large companies and are developing relationships to build sponsors – some have even sponsored our LANs in the past and know who we are. Many other large sponsors are being pursued by our staff, but often times those companies need to know we can deliver a large number of people before they will commit to providing highly valuable sponsorship. This means we’ll be tracking down more prizes as we approach the LAN date – I sure bet a successful kickstarter would perk some ears! ;)
Previous sponsors of our past LANs include: Ranken, U.S. Army, Legit Reviews, Nerds on Site, Adrenaline Gaming Zone, Gold's Gym, DeVry University, Steam Powered Servers, Data Jacks, CoolerMaster, Abit, Muskin, Thermaltake, Crucial, Zombie Squad, Case Ace, Nvida, Alienware, Dakota PC Warehouse, A Perfect Fit Promotions, Razer, Fontbonne University.
Why do you need these funds?
Short Answer: To host fantastic video gaming events that are fun, consistent, safe, and a healthy mix of competitive and casual.
Long Answer: To develop a long-term strategy to serve the growing video gaming market, it requires industrial-level power equipment to ensure that all the computers and consoles are running safely without putting our attendees personal hardware at risk. This is a large chunk of our costs, and is generally a one-time expense. When the equipment is purchased, it will support semi-annual LANs for many years -- forming a foundation for the gaming community.
Tell me about the upcoming LAN...
The LAN will be held on January 3rd, 2015 at Saint Louis University and will include casual, semi-professional, and professional gameplay. Tournaments will be held in…
League of Legends - 5v5 Double Elimination
- 3v3 Double Elimination
Counter Strike: Global Offensive ("CS:GO") - 5v5 Double Elimination
Hearthstone - 1v1 Double Elimination, best of three games. Finals are best of five games.
Minecraft - a triathalon of challenges will test your ability to build, survive, and navigate!
Tournament sponsorship and prizes will be developed if the Kickstarter meets funding goals.
Did you say Non-Profit?
In our pursuit of building a thriving gaming community for LAN parties, we decided that it would be great to develop a non-profit organization to support educational programs that teach topics like programming and robotics to young kids. Why? Because we wish that was available to us 10-15 years ago!
As Tony mentions in the video, this will not be forced upon our gamers, and none of the funds raised by this Kickstarter are going to charity. We simply want to build an organization that can grow along side Laclede's LAN and provide meaningful benefit to the young tech-enthusiasts in the Midwest. We have actually already formed a Missouri non-profit corporation, but will need help from the community to be approved on the federal level.
How do I help? What's in it for me?
Anything you give will help build the community and support computer gaming in the Midwest, even if you just throw some change in the jar or adopt a cable in need. We will have shirts for every attendee and getting in at the Early Bird level saves you $10!
Laclede's LAN Staff:
Because we aim for this Kickstarter to develop a community, we hope to keep our stretch goals focused on long-term objectives.
- $800 Above Funding Goal: This additional $800 of funding will purchase a small, quality server rack, along with a heavy duty cart and tubs to better manage the servers and cables. These are mostly small items, but can go a long way in protecting our equipment investment.
$1,300 Above Funding Goal: This additional $500 will be applied to the cost of snacks, food, and drinks at our LAN parties until it is exhausted. We will sell these items at slightly below our cost to pay-it-forward to our gamer community.
- $2,000 Above Funding Goal: This additional $700 of funding will purchase custom mouse pads for as many of our LAN attendees as possible.
- $3,000 Above Funding Goal: This additional $1,000 of funding will be used on the legal and application costs of getting our Non-Profit entity approved by the Federal government.
- $4,500 Above Funding Goal: We will use these funds to reduce the entry price (by a fixed amount) on as many future LAN parties as possible making the events lower cost to our attendees.
Have questions? We have a full FAQ: available on our website:
Risks and challenges
The Laclede's LAN staff has collectively discussed the challenges that we face and the greatest threat so far is whether or not the community truly exists in such a force to support a large kickstarter. We all know hundreds of gamers, but the changing world of technology has made consoles better, internet faster, and voice/video communication much easier. With that said, there are plenty of reasons for gamers to stay home.
While we strive to make LAN parties a unique gaming experience, there is a possibility that we overestimate the community's demand for large LAN parties.
Our next primary concern is sponsorship. All great LANs need significant sponsorship, and those marketing dollars are highly sought-after. While we have extensive experience working with sponsors in the past, we realize that today may be even harder to find companies to get financially involved with LAN parties.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Everyone knows that gaming with friends is better than gaming alone. The laughs are louder, the competition more invigorating, and the victories so much sweeter. LAN parties are gaming with friends taken to the next level; we set aside entire days out of our schedules just to see how much fun we can possibly have in one sitting, and how many of our friends we can cram into a basement or a convention hall.
At Laclede’s LAN, we want to throw LAN parties that are the absolute best they can be. We want to have a knowledgeable, friendly staff. We want to have tournaments that people love to compete in, and prizes worth fighting for. We want to have just enough of a sense of humor and adventure to try new things that haven’t been seen before, but just enough seriousness to get the job done right. We want to build a better LAN, and we need your help – not just for this first event, but for many events to come!
We’re building a LAN organization, not just one event. As such, we’re going to need equipment that is not only high quality, but is modular enough to change and adapt to different locations and setups. This will allow us to set up our power grid to best serve the attendees, instead of the other way around.
In our past events, we hand-made all of our power gear. While it always worked, it only worked for a certain table setup, and it was starting to deteriorate by the time we stopped throwing events. This time around, we’re getting gear that will last a very long time (we won’t need money for anything other than tickets next time). This is good stuff – all power runs are 10/3 or 12/3, capable of comfortably carrying at least 20 amps, sheathed in high-quality flexible insulation, and UL listed so we never have to worry about not meeting local wiring code with our setups. This equipment can also work with a generator if needed, potentially expanding our location opportunities. If we’re making this LAN the best it can be, we don’t want to be held back because we skimped on the juice.
You're still welcome to come! There is, of course, the old-fashioned method of simply walking around and drumming up interest, but we'll be taking some community feedback before the event and putting up public servers in the most requested games, as well as doing some basic matchmaking and player listing for others. So if you want to play Dota 2, bring your friends and we'll match you up with any other Dota 2 teams at the event!
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