No, I hadn’t forgotten about doing this, life just got in the way as soon as I got back from Blizzcon.
I had a fantastic time!
Detailing out my time in Anaheim…
Wednesday was spent traveling, so by the time we arrived in Anaheim, I was pretty tired, but too excited to rest. We checked into the hotel, and I immediately hopped online. I played around with twtter, and found a couple people who had already arrived (who I already talk to on twitter) and planned to meet up for dinner. We went over to Downtown Disney and watched a hockey game, drank some beers and discovered that Mike Sacco from WoW Insider was hanging out at the bar. We said hi, and chatted for a few minutes. He let it slip that instead of attending the WoW Insider Meetup via Skype, Felicia Day was actually going to be there. We eventually headed back to the hotels.
Thursday was a little bit more low key, but involved an awful lot of walking again. Woke up, immediately started dinking around on Twitter and found out that Daewin had arrived. Offered to go have lunch, so we did! We walked back down to Downtown Disney, hitting up Ralph Brennans and enjoyed some pretty decent Cajun food, and the most decadent black and white bread pudding. Upon walking back from Downtown Disney, we decided it would be silly to go wait in line right when people were picking up their stuff. The line wrapped nearly around the convention center!
As we were laughing at all the people in line, we watched Chris Metzen walk outside for a smoke — clearly looking stressed, so we left him alone. We waited until around 6pm, then hopped in line. It did move surprisingly fast, so we were done by 6:30, when we decided to go to the WoW Insider meetup and get some food. My husband was able to talk to Lodur and Matticus, and I was able to briefly talk to Frostheim. That place was ridiculously crowded, so my group and I decided to opt to head back to the hotel early and get a good night’s sleep before the convention.
Friday was an incredibly busy, tiring, and exciting day. We woke up early and got in line for entrance. I want to say it was around 6:30 or 7. Yes, I was clearly still on east coast time. We were easily some of the first to get into the convention hall, and we managed to snag some great seats for the opening ceremony. One of the coolest things about sitting in line for so long is being able to see a lot of the costumes for the contests that night. (full gallery of Blizzcon photos at the bottom of this post)
Opening ceremonies were a great bit of fun. My husband decided he was going to dash to the Blizzard store as soon as doors open to get me one of the much coveted water bottles — and was amazingly back to the seats by the time the ceremonies started with all our loot. It was quite fun to sit in an entire row filled with guild mates, and watch the presentation by the Blizzard Execs. I was quite impressed with Metzen’s “Geek Is” speech. I think it was very well put together, and proved a point that being a geek is about passion. You’re classified as a “geek” if you get fascinated by something and make it a part of your life. For many, Blizzard games have become part of their “geek” life.
As far as releases, this year was all about Diablo III. The Demon Hunter is going to be a fun class to play, and I did eventually get a chance to play it. The Cataclysm cinematic is amazing on a big screen with a huge sound system. If you don’t have a way to do it, I suggest you find someone who can help you out. The audio impact of the trailer is pretty incredible on a large scale.
The remainder of the day for Friday was spent running around playing games, going to the realm meetup for Destromath, and entering contests. Believe it or not, we decided to skip the contests that evening in lieu of grabbing dinner. On the way out of the convention center though, we bumped in to Chris Metzen again, and chatted with him for a few minutes. He’s a really cool guy. My guild had already planned on going to dinner at Bubba Gump’s Friday evening, where we had a great time catching up. We have been taking a break before Cataclysm, so it was great to catch up with everyone. A few of the guild mates had never met before, so there’s always something great about that. I can honestly say, my guild is like family.
That evening ended with the Twisted Nether meetup coming into Bubba Gump, and I decided I was far too tired to hang out for very long. I said hi to Fimlys and left my husband there to mingle. He had a great time! If you’re a blogger, and haven’t listened to Twisted Nether, or looked at the Blog Azeroth forums, I highly recommend it. It’s a great community out there.
Saturday was much more low-key. We got up at a leisurely 7am, saw that it was drizzly and raining and said “screw the line, it’s breakfast time!” Promptly going down to the restaurant in the hotel for breakfast. I’m pretty sure we didn’t start walking down to the convention center until around 8:30 or so, which was a far more human hour than the day before. And the rain stopped, which is even better.
The day was spent wandering around, playing games, entering contests, going through the Jinx store. We also did the Daily Quest first thing. This year the quest was gathering puzzle pieces from other vendors around the convention center, and then returning back to the Brady Games booth for prizes. I managed to snag a Razer Orca headset and a mousepad because my prize card was a purple. The convention is far less crowded on Saturday, so you don’t feel like you have to trip over people to move, so there wasn’t a panic to try to get everything done.
The evening was happily ended with the Tenacious D concert, and much to my ecstatic surprise, Dave Grohl was drumming for them. I’m quite proud to say I’ve had the opportunity to see one of the best rock musicians of our time get back to his Nirvana roots and tear up a drum set. Big kudos to Blizzard on booking Tenacious D. I know they were a controversial choice for a performer due to the adult nature of 99% of their songs, but they’re geeky enough, silly enough, and hard core enough to really rock Blizzcon.
Once my husband and I had seen all of the concert we wanted to see (had to witness The Metal and The Greatest Song Ever Written, of course), we headed back to the hotel with the remaining guild mates, ordered Chinese food and reflected on the convention. I almost want to say that’s my favorite part of the trip. I was able to strengthen relationships and get to know several more of my guild mates, and can’t wait to get back to raiding with them in Cataclysm.
In summary, Blizzcon this year was no less epic than last year, but for very different reasons. Last year was my first adventure to Anaheim, I wasn’t part of the blogging community, and didn’t know what to expect. This last year, I had an idea how things were going to go, but I had met so many new people via twitter and through the blogging community, I didn’t have time to spend with all of them, and be able to hang out with my guild too. If plans work out okay, the intention is to go to Blizzcon again next year, and maybe I can work on this balance thing and be able to have the best of both worlds.
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