Origins 2019 by the Numbers

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Thank you for an amazing show! We can still feel the positive energy that radiated off everyone at Origins 2019. Hopefully you've recovered from your travels and con crud, and have actually been able to play some of the games you brought home!

We're happy to report that Origins has once again hit record attendance numbers! Here's an overview of the show by the numbers.

Total badges: 20,642 (up from 18,646 in 2018!)
Total turnstile: 71,237
Total exhibitors: 257
Total Game Masters: 1,085
Total volunteers: 163
Total volunteer hours: 5,242.5
Total charity pin sales benefitting Kaleidoscope Youth Center: $7110
Total units collected through Blood Drive: 156 (that means 468 lives were saved!)
Total staff: 10
Total days until Origins 2020: 359

Thank you again to all our fabulous sponsors, and especially White Wizard Games for being the 2019 co-show sponsor.

45th Annual Origins Awards Recap!

Last night during the 45th Annual Origins Awards, winners chosen by the Academy Jury and by the Fans at Origins Game Fair 2019 were announced. Huge congratulations to everyone who was nominated and an even bigger congratulations to those that won!

Root by Leder Games won Best Board Game, Fan Favorite, and Game of the Year!

The Mind by Pandasaurus Games won Best Card Game and Fan Favorite!

The Tea Dragon Society Card Game by Renegade Game Studios won Best Family Game!

Echidna Shuffle by Wattsalpoag Games won Fan Favorite Family Game!

Keyforge by Fantasy Flight won Best Collectible Game and Fan Favorite!

Vampire the Masquerade by Modiphius Entertainment won Best Role-Playing Game and Fan Favorite!

Dungeons & Dragons: Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes by Wizards of the Coast won Best Role-Playing Game Supplement and Fan Favorite!


Necromunda by Games Workshop and Star Wars Legion by Fantasy Flight won Best Miniatures Game! Star Wars Legion also won Fan Favorite.

Dungeons & Dragons: Black Dragon Trophy Plaque by WizKids won Best Game Accessory!

Dungeons & Dragons: Monster Cards by Gale Force Nine won Fan Favorite Game Accessory!

Fantasy horror illustrator Gerald Brom and prolific game designer Vlaada Chvátil were both inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Mage Knight by WizKids and Apples to Apples by Mattel were also inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Jamey Stegmaier received the Rising Star award in its inaugural year!

Game Toppers Tops Origins With Custom Game Mats and a Giant Top Hat

#MeetUnderTheTopHat at Origins Game Fair!

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Game Toppers LLC is proud to partner with GAMA for Origins Game Fair 2019. This three-year partnership will provide an elevated experience in the Board Room Games Library and the Origins Awards Showcase area. In the Board Room, attendees can enjoy an elevated gaming experience with custom premium Game Toppers mats featuring Crit, the Origins mascot. They can also demo a selection of Origins Awards nominees on luxury Game Toppers, also featuring custom mats, in the Showcase area. Additionally, if attendees are looking for a good meeting spot, Kevin “Burky” Burkhardsmeier has just the spot for you, under a giant inflatable top hat! Hanging directly above booth C205, you can easily spot this icon from anywhere in the hall. Once there, you can check out the array of Game Toppers that will be on Kickstarter right after Origins on June, 25th.

“Origins is one of my favorite conventions, and I am so thrilled to be helping provide some of our core gaming upgrades. Our 3mm premium edge-stitched mats will make a huge difference in the Board Room Game Library, and the Game Toppers that will display the Origins Awards nominees are a brilliant way to showcase these great games each year. A big win-win for everyone!” says Burky, Founder of Game Toppers.

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About Game Toppers LLC: Game Toppers transforms your kitchen or dining room table into a premium, portable gaming solution with all the features of a high-end gaming table at a fraction of the cost. Loaded with features such as military grade aluminum, card slots, cup, and wine holders, thematic premium stitched edge gaming mats from noted board game artists, and optional luxuriant wood inlays will without a doubt provide you with the Ultimate Gaming Upgrade.

About GAMA:

The Game Manufacturers Association (GAMA) is the non-profit trade organization dedicated to serving the hobby games industry. GAMA strengthens and supports all industry professionals by advancing their interests, providing educational programs and opportunities, and promoting our unique form of quality social entertainment.

New Sensory-Friendly Gaming Room at Origins 2019!


Origins Game Fair is excited to announce a partnership with charity organization Path of Play(based in Toronto) to found the Sensory-Friendly Gaming Room at the 2019 show. This initiative is aimed towards creating an inclusive space for families living with autism and foster awareness for gamers not impacted by special needs.

This new room will be open to all attendees of Origins 2019 and will feature a wide variety of gaming options. There will even be seminars offered to board gaming enthusiasts on Thursday and Friday, to show off some striking similarities between the two hobbies.

Board game titles by family game companies HABA and Kids Table Board Gaming will be available to play in this room as well. A variety of video games and pinball machines will also be available, including a Nintendo Switch and a selection of classic arcade games like Frogger. Part of the programming will be focused on local therapy centers who are welcomed to bring their clients to participate in these events and enjoy the safe and inclusive environment.

From Path of Play, Executive Director, Mike Primeau – “The Path of Play project began in a basement.  Every month, families were invited to come and play pinball, board games, and video games…together.  It gave families living with autism an inclusive play space, and offered families not impacted by special needs a meaningful outlet to better understand this realm.  Being invited to the Origins Game Fair is a true honor, and indicator that we need to determine how big of a footprint we can make in helping families grow through the world of gaming.”

Attendees will be able to find this room in A115 of the convention center. It will keep the same times as the Exhibit Hall.

For more information about Path of Play, please visit or find them on social media @pathofplay.

White Wizard Games Co-Sponsor of Origins Game Fair 2019


Origins Game Fair is thrilled to announce White Wizard Games as co-sponsor of Origins Game Fair 2019! White Wizard Games will be increasing opportunities to grab free items, participate in events, and win amazing prizes at Origins.

“I am super excited to be sponsoring Origins at the highest level,” said Robert Dougherty, CEO of White Wizard Games. “I’ve been attending Origins for decades, first as an attendee then as an exhibitor, and it has always been one of my favorite shows. Origins was the first trade show we did with Star Realms, and the incredible response we got there from press and attendees was a big factor in Star Realms’ run-away success. It feels great to be a co-sponsor and to be giving back to the show that has given us so much over the years.”

White Wizard Games will be giving out a free copy of Epic Card Game to every attendee that stops by their booth (while supplies last). Get your copy and play sealed, draft, or constructed deck game play for up to 4 players.

As co-sponsor White Wizard Games will also be giving away some serious cash prizes!  Players will compete to win their share of $20,000 at the Star Realms Origins $10K Championship and the Epic Card Game Origins $10K Championship.

Finally, Hero Realms fans will have the opportunity to play in a Legend Series tournament, where the winner will have the opportunity to be featured in the artwork of a card in an upcoming set of Hero Realms!

Find out more about White Wizard Games at

Origins 2018 Sets Attendance Record


That’s a wrap on Origins 2018! We have a lot to be thankful for this year—great partnerships, support throughout the Columbus community, and of course attendees spending their week with us at the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

Attendance hit another record high at 18,648, an increase of 1,647 from 2017. Turnstile attendance also hit a record high at 70,765, an increase of 11,807 from 2017.

“The Dungeons & Dragons team would like to thank you ALL for coming out to Origins and playing with over 2,800 other adventurers this weekend in the D&D Adventurers League area managed by Baldman Games,” said Chris Lindsay, Product Marketing Specialist of Dungeons and Dragons. Satine Phoenix, Community Manager of Dungeons and Dragons, also commented, “The ‘Red War’ EPIC and the D&D OPEN ‘Gangs of Waterdeep’ both drew record participation in two unique story-rich and interactive experiences, providing cooperative and competitive elements that were captivating and extraordinary.”


Origins 2018 offered a variety of events and activities for all attendees—from role-playing adventures with show co-sponsor Dungeons & Dragons, to musical acts, a costume contest with cash prizes, a live Dungeons and Dragons comedy show by the Knights of the Arcade and the return of True Dungeon—a live-action, walk-through dungeon experience.

Other events included major tournament play with national championship tournaments by IELLO, Catan Studios, and WizKids, and regional tournaments by Bandai, Bushiroad, and Magic the Gathering. Prize support from companies providing tournament-style play at Origins totaled at over $20,000!

“Each year, Origins improves in size and quality—2018 was no exception,” said Stephan Brissaud, Chief Operating Officer of IELLO. “I particularly liked the new setup of the halls. That generated a constant flow in the middle of the hall. Congratulations to the GAMA staff for another well-executed show.”

This year, the Exhibit Hall was placed in Hall B, between Gaming Hall A and Gaming Hall C. This new layout provided two large areas dedicated to gaming and an expansion to the exhibitor hall, which grew by 136 booth spaces. A larger exhibit hall means attendees have more opportunities to learn about great products, test the latest games available, and of course shop from even more of their favorite vendors.

“This was the year of the highest sales and the least sleep,” said Anne-Marie DeWitt, CEO of Fireside Games. “And I still have people I wish I had been able to talk to and events I wish I had been able to attend. Origins has such a unique place among the gaming conventions. It’s wonderful to see it continue to grow in value.”


Origins continues to experience growth while maintaining a relaxed, family-friendly atmosphere. Every year, the show expands its range in entertainment, offering events and activities that target different fandoms and interests. It’s a convention that is welcoming, personable, and takes pride in its inclusivity.

“Origins 2018 was a hit,” said John Ward, Executive Director of GAMA. “Our exhibitors and attendees seemed very pleased with the new layout of the halls—we saw a lot of vendor and attendee interactions happening in throughout the exhibitor hall. Origins wouldn’t be the show that it is without the hard work of my fantastic team. We’d like to thank our show co-sponsor, Dungeons & Dragons, and all our sponsors for their immeasurable support. We’d also like to thank all our exhibitors for the creativity they brought to the hall and gaming areas, and our GMs and volunteers for their dedication and commitment to making sure attendees have a wonderful experience. We especially want to thank the attendees for coming out to spend another five days gaming and having fun with us.”

Origins Game Fair 2019 is scheduled to be held June 12-16 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center. Hotel blocks with group rates will open for reservations September 2018.