2013 New York Comic Con Survival Guide – Part II
Thanks for coming back. Today is part 2 of my New York Comic Con Survival Guide. Again, this post is just meant to help you plan some things out so you enjoy your experience in a mere 13 days… OK, here goes!
3G or 4G? More like NO G!
Guess what happens when 50,000 of your closest friends all get together in one big ass room and start tweeting, text messaging, calling people, and checking email? Data speeds crawwwwwwwwllllllllll! This fact will not limit people using their phones and various electronic devices. If you’re with some friends and you plan to separate then you might want to establish some ground rules like “let’s all meet under the giant Optimus Prime at noon!” The reality is that you will send messages to each other but they won’t make it in a timely fashion. You will get the text but by the time that you read it, Nathan Fillion is already gone and you won’t get to grill him about possibly being an avenger (inside nerd talk, if you don’t know what I’m talking about, look it up!) Also, it is really big and loud at comic con and there are shiny objects everywhere, you might not even realize that 10 texts just came in via the airwaves. Wifi is also interesting, it’s not free throughout the center. Basically you pay $5/hr or you can get a daily or weekend rate. This is typical with most conventions so I kinda expect it, but they will have a free wifi hotspot in artist alley this year but it will also probably be slow because thousands of people will be connecting. If your phone has wifi in it, I’d recommend to turn it off until you need it so it doesn’t search all day and drain battery life, Bluetooth too!
Be the Paparazzi at NYCC
On the topic of electronics it’s up to you if you want to bring iPads or laptops, I’ve brought them so I had something to do on the bus rides to and from the con, just realize that you have to carry them for the day. One of my favorite parts of the show is taking pictures of people. Although they will pose, they are trying to enjoy the show as much as you so try to take your pic fast. I have used my phone, my point & shoot, and my big Nikon DSLR. Although the theme of my posts seems to be “carry less,” I will say that I took the best pictures with the Nikon, not because it’s a better camera but because I kept it around my neck and it was always on so I could always get a great shot fast. My point & shoot would sit in my pocket and by the time that I pulled it out and turned it on the Cosplayers would move on or the action already happened. This is all totally your call, but just some things that I’ve realized over the years.
More Than Meets the Eye!
Believe it or not, there is more that comics at the New York Comic Con! When I tell people that I go to these things, I think that envision just a room with a handful of people selling comic books. Although we got that here, there is so much more. First off, if you haven’t been to one yet, you should check out a panel. A panel is basically a presentation of some sort and they can be based on comic books, movies, TV shows, toys, video games, and wand dueling (thats right WAND DUELING….seriously, you cant make this shit up!) There are literally tons of them out there, so go to the NY Comic Con website and check them all out. Going to a panel is also a great way to take a rest for an hour or so. Artist Alley is also a great place to check out. Imagine getting a one of a kind sketch from David Finch? Well, this is your chance. Word to the wise: drawings cost money, but they are definitely a unique collectable. The Block is a really cool scene to check out too. Its basically a show within a show where you’ll see some really out-there and weird art pieces, cool techno toys, and some awesome indie merchandise. Also, if you like Anime, then check out the NY Anime Convention (its also a show within a show!) There’s a whole wing dedicated to that wacky animation stuff that nerds love, again with a ton of merchandise for you to fill your computer desk with too! Oh yeah, then there’s video games…..Whats that you say, Video Games? Yes, Video Games. Tons of game companies come to this thing and basically show off their wares. You get the chance to not only see new games but usually you can play unreleased ones too! The gaming booths are also a great place to go when you finally decide to buy Mjolior and eventually go broke, because you’re doing what you love, who cares if you can’t eat for a week! Gotta a favorite nerd TV Show? Most likely they are there too. Last year I got all this badass Avengers stuff (posters, Hawkey t-shirt, and free comics) from the Shield Hellicarrier. It was quite an epic sight to see! And last but not least is the show floor where you can buy….wait for it…..COMICS! and other nerd-based paraphernalia (basically anything that you can imagine!) So, for the un-initiated, Comic Con is just a room with some guys with a handful of comics, but we (and now you) know what it really is…. An awesome celebration of Pop Culture and everything amazing that goes into it wrapped into a weekend event….one that should not be missed.
Karma goes a Long Way!
This is a great experience whether you are alone or with a friend, but to be honest the best way to go is as a dynamic duo. Large groups don’t work well because its too hard to keep track of one another. Thats why its good to make a meet-up plan before the action starts. But if you can stick with a buddy then you will have someone to wait in line with, to take pictures with, to watch your stuff as you run to the bathroom in the middle of a panel, and to simply make inappropriate comments to all day. Just remember, this person is your bro (or bra for the ladies reading…) they are not your sidekick. So make sure that you go to some of the stuff that they like. Case in point, I really like Transformers, my pal is so-so with them and I could sometimes care less of some of the media panels, but he likes them. So we make it a point to just be cool with each other….but if you both have different things going on at the same time, its cool to separate and meet back up later to get drunk finding Dr. Who!
Make a Plan, but be Prepared to Deviate…
My last suggestion to you is to sit down and check out the NYCC website and see everything that’s gonna be there before you go. This way you’ll be able to prioritize what you want to see when you get there because it doesn’t matter if this is your first time or your 10th, the moment you walk in you will be dumbstruck with nerdy goodness for anywhere from 10 minutes to 10 hours. People walk around with their mouths open all day drooling because they literally have no idea what to do. Check out the site, use the My Show Planner tool, or download the app and make a plan. Just realize that with so many people in attendance you will have to plan to go to the Marvel panel early, not 5 minutes but more like a half hour early if you want to be guaranteed a seat. Also, plan to wait at least an hour+ to get into any big media panel like the Avengers Movie panel last year. At the end of the day you can make all the plans in the world and might decide to just hang on the show floor and just experience the con. Either way, you’ll have a blast, just roll with the punches!
Alright True Believers….thats my knowledge dropped on you like an 800lb Gorilla. Hope you enjoyed reading and take whatever advise that you’d like, just take it with a grain of salt.
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