This past weekend I went to San Diego Comic Con for the first time ever!
I had managed to get Sunday badges for myself and a friend who lives in Los Angeles, so very early Saturday morning we drove down to San Diego, parked and rode the train into downtown.
The thing about SDCC is that you don’t need a badge to go and have a good time. There is so much awesome cool stuff to do around the convention center!
Assassin’s Creed had set up a giant obstacle course, The Nerdist, Geek And Sundry, and Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls had a “Conival” set up at Petco Park, Adult Swim had activities behind the convention center, HBO had a Game Of Thrones Experience, and Nerd HQ had a full schedule of events, too! My friend and I spent most of the day at Petco Park, and it was so much fun! There were panels (we saw Daniel Radcliffe from afar), photo ops (Geek and Sundry had swords and crowns and all sorts of fun props) , and even laser tag (yup – The Nerdist had laser tag).
I was dressed up as a Stormtrooper, and it was so much fun to take pictures with people. My friend was dresed as a Cyberman, so she was snagging pics with all the other Doctor Who cosplayers as well.
On Sunday we picked up our badges and walked the show floor. We had decided beforehand that we didn’t want to try to go to any panels. We didn’t want to spend the ony day we had badges for camping out in line for Hall H! Walking the show floor was so much fun, but so, so crowded. I would definitely not recommend wearing a bulky cosplay to this con. I was cosplaying Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica, and it was a great costume, because it was super comfortable. This was the first con I had a cosplay I was really proud of, so I was really happy when people asked to take pics, and had a ton of fun taking pics with other people, too.
The only negative thing I have to say about the convention is that there never seemed to be any staff or volunteers around, when we needed help. My friend misplaced her badge towards the end of the day, and we had to walk around for a really long time before we were able to find someone who could help us.
I think it’s easy to be intimidated by this convention; everyone always talks about the lines and the panels, but I think that even first-time con goers would have a great time here! I would recommend just walking the show floor, if you only have a badge for one day, and are new to conventions. There’s still so much to see and do, and a lot of the panels are officially recorded, so you can watch later. Like I said, we didn’t even try to see anything in any of the panel rooms, and looking at the lines for Hall H outside, I would definitely want to do some research before attempting to see one of them. And I would definitely recommend checking out everything going on outside, too. There is just as much, if not more, fun stuff to do, and most of it is free!
Overall, it was an amazing experience. I definitely want to go back next year and try to get tickets for Nerd HQ, and maybe go to some of the parties. We had booked our hotel too late, and were staying so far away from the convention center that we couldn’t go to anything at night. So next year, with a little more forethought, I think that it would be a blast to go again for 3 or 4 days, even if I’m only in the convention center for one.