Sunday, August 31, 2008

Convention Updates - Part 5 - Fan Expo

This con, for gaming at any rate, is a joke.

A big, fat, stinking joke and it was on anyone involved with the Hobby Gaming Industry (as opposed to the Electronic Gaming Industry). You see, Fan Expo is a convention that caters to a lot of people. It's got Anime fans, SF fans, Comic Book fans, Horror fans and finally Gaming fans. I put our industry last because that's exactly where they put us. Seriously, we were in the armpit of the convention centre.

To give you a brief description:

We were in a featureless room, with no signage, behind the guest of honor autograph area and next to the dark video game corner. The only entrance that bothered to open onto us had VIP entrance over top of it all weekend.

Quotes of the convention:

"I found you because I went looking for a bathroom."
"I didn't go there because it was the DARK VIDEO GAME corner."
"This looks like a place I shouldn't be going."

If I had paid for this I would have been screaming from the beginning of the con until the end of it. I wouldn't have stopped yelling until they either gave me my money back or given me something for my money because it was awful.

Zero foot traffic, a hassle when I tried to roll with the situation and make something positive out of it. It was perhaps the worst con I've ever been at.

Now this isn't a slight against the guy who organized it. Justin did his best to try to make sure we got what we needed and to get those who he works for to listen to us, but at best the brushed him off at worst the ignored him. He tried his best, it's not his fault that we've dropped to beyond after thought.

With this con it's never a case of "if something goes wrong" it's a "when something goes wrong." Last year none of the gaming guests were listed and none of my events were posted. This year none of my events were posted and we had to deal with the location from hell.

The only reason why I bother is that it's free, and even then I wonder if I overpaid this year.

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