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Old 07-11-2011, 02:19 PM   #1
Saroc_Luclin

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I'm sitting in the airport with 2 hours to kill, so I figured I'd start the Feedback thread for this year.

Overall, I had a VERY enjoyable time. It was one of my favorite fan faire years I think.

Positives:

* Brasse as a host. She kept the humor up, the addresses flowing, and kept everyone entertained. Very well done. Best Host(ess) ever.

* EQ Live quest was a blast. Maybe it could've used one more event, but overall, the tasks were fairly quick and entertaining and got everyone involved.

* The comic/game vendor was a nice addition. I don't know how well he did, but I hope he'll be there in the future and maybe tied in more. 

* A lot more thngs I'm too tired to remember at the moment.  

Needs Improvements:

* Biggest thing I can think of at the moment is a situation my guildleader had. It would be nice if there was a way to purchase access to JUST the wrapup dinner. (or if the Saturday pass included that dinner in it). My guild leader was with his wife this weekend (who doesn't play). So he wanted a way to buy access to the dinner for her without making it a 140$ dinner. 

* Station store needs more variety. The game cards and SC cards were nice, but you need more in general. Maybe you could have some Fan Faire Exclusive items you can only buy the code at the FF store. (Use a code so you can gift/use it on any accounts you want)

* And you need more and new Pins. Pin collecting is always popular, but you've had the same set ever since I started going (and often run out). Some new Pins, even if they are just game name only would be great.  

* During the talks, ESPECIALLY during the costume contest, it would be nice if the screens on either side of the stage would have a camera feed of the Stage so those of us towards the back of the room could see those great costumes. If you're doing an audience reaction 'poll' for winners you may want to have a listener off the stage to help judge the reactions, since I'm pretty sure the gingerbread man costume got as big a reaction as the Top 3 did.

Thanks for another great year. I'm exhausted at the moment, but I'm looking forward to next year's fan faire.

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Old 07-11-2011, 04:09 PM   #2
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I agree with the camera on the stage, I was in the very last row and could not see much of the details on the stage.

Love the ranger movie!

Would like to see the next one in a different location, maybe every other year go east / west or west / central  anything to avoid half the games population from like 12+ hrs of planes/airports is nice!

One thing that that I would like changed that you would have a little more control over would be to have a small brake between panels (this might not work because we always have a big line of people even at the end)  maybe have water in the panel room (was in the eq2 room only) or better but less practical a bar.

Besides the outrages prices to eat in the hotel I enjoyed the trip greatly.  I liked the wheel event every hour if you found a gold coin.  won a light sabre lol.

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Old 07-11-2011, 08:53 PM   #3
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Hey there! Imma just go ahead and interject my two cents in here too, if that's okay 

This was my first year at Fan Faire and I had an absolute blast - the best four days Ever! With that being said however, I do have some feedback that I hope will be taken into consideration.

The Good:

  • It was a very well-organized event and had a little bit of something for everyone.
  • Having an event that was so close together with the hotel was great (i.e. being able to stay at the same hotel without having to walk several blocks to get where you needed).
  • Brasse of course was the most awesome dwarf ever - she made sure everyone felt welcomed, joked around, and made sure everyone had a great time. That kind of hospitality (especially for a newbie going to the event) was really special. She was also perfect for the all of the addresses and whatnot (as was mentioned previously in this thread) and kept everyone thoroughly entertained. Her speech about SWG was also very moving - I even teared up a little even though I did not have the honor of playing for very long. You guys need to pay her more, though. Seriously! She got up and SANG not only karaoke but also that kick-[Removed for Content] version of "We Will Rock You!"
  • The vendors were a great touch, especially the variety of them. Of course I'm biased about the Larry Elmore booth in particular.
  • The EQ2 Live Quest was a lot of fun (sadly, the only one I got to participate in). I was able to get into a PUG group and I think we all had a lot of fun with it.
  • Having the game room out there for players to get to play their favorite SOE games was very cool. I logged in to do a few quests and check my auctions and even found I had sold enough stuff for a few plat, so that was great!
  • Meeting Firiona Vie and Antonia Bayle in-person was pretty awesome (and hot).
  • Having places to buy food right in the hotel made things a lot easier. Since I've never been before, I was worried we were going to have to travel all over the strip to get food and get ripped off by their prices even more, not to mention potentially being late to any of the panels and whatnot. The selection of food was pretty decent as well so there was mostly something for everyone right inside.
  • The costumes freaking ROCKED. I was so inspired that I am going to go next year in costume. Some of my favorites included the harpy, the female othmir, the arasai, Terris Thule, the ratonga, and well all of them were really awesome lol.
  • The green screen photo was a really nice touch. I took a photo on the EQ2 Pegasus with wings and a little dagger. It was a nice keepsake to bring home with me.
  • In the opening address, Smed's personal apology about the recent attacks on Sony's data was really touching. To have a CEO personally apologize live, on-stage to us was HUGE. Especially (at least in my mind) seeing as what happened was not his fault, or even his company's. That kind of personal ownership attests to the commitment he has to SOE and the community. Adding in the free authenticator and soon-to-be free mobile editions backed up his words nicely.
  • I really enjoyed the variety of panels to choose from. There was something for everyone - artists, writers, designers, fans, players, etc. They were all really informative, fun, and insightful. Great job!
  • The prizes were super fantastic! I was drooling from way in the back of the banquet hall. All of you that won - congratulations! How many HP's do you have so I can raid you?
  • The Ranger movie was hilarious <3 thank you Jethal Silverwing!

The Not So Good:

  • As much I liked the close proximity of everything at Bally's - I think a different venue next year would be great. There was a particular incident with a particular vendor that was very unfortunate. Bally's didn't have cameras or real security in the Grand Ballroom where vendors were. That's ridiculous considering they had cameras everywhere else in that place. I'd hate to see anything happen like that in the future. The security guards that were in place also said that when the incident came up, it wasn't their job to deal with (though they did keep a vigilant look-out afterwards for suspicious activity) and by the time we got to 'real' security, the perpetrator was long gone. Additionally, the food in the area was wayyyyy over priced and more often than not, not even close to worth it to buy. Even the room I got had things like peeling wallpaper and the base board of our room was coming off in several places.
  • I think the pool party should have lasted about an hour or two longer. I was surprised at how quickly it went by and how early they were having people get out of the pool and turned off the music. I felt kinda rushed getting out - and let me just say that being drunk and being rushed are not a good combination Even if you guys don't want to keep the pool party open, it would have been nice to have a place to hang out at afterwards (for everyone) to sober up with friends or something.
  • Having the "Breaking Into the Industry" panel was NOT a good idea to have first thing in the morning after the pool party lol. I was late I know...as were some of the devs who were supposed to be on the panel. Also, for those of us who can be socially awkward penguins after being up all night and being slightly hungover, you're not always going to get the best answers when asking the audience why they came to the panel. It was a very, very informative panel though and I know a lot of us greatly appreciated it being offered at all, but next time it would be really awesome if it could be a different time, further away from a drunken pool party.
  • Buffer time! The panels all went back to back to back with no time to get from one panel to the next if it happened to be in a different room. This in turn, caused panels to run later and later because they had to start later to make sure people had time to get in. There was also no good time to break for lunch without completely skipping a panel. Next year it would be greatly appreciated by all to give about 5-10 minutes to get from one panel to the next and about an hour to get lunch somewhere in there if at all possible.
  • I read somewhere that there were supposed to be refreshments somewhere from 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM. I don't remember seeing anything except water or a cash bar. Having something to munch on would have been great as it was difficult staying up late to hang out with friends which meant skipping breakfast to get the first panels and then skipping lunch to go through all the panels, and not being able to eat dinner finally until after 8:00 PM sometimes. And maybe like a huge neon sign that pointed the way to foodstuffs like in those old cartoons with "Eat at Joe's" so us noobs know how to get there.
  • Having someone around like an info NPC woulda been super cool for those of us who were new there. Having someone who could help out people who might not be familiar with Fan Faire so they get the most enjoyment possible would be great. For instance, they could help an attendee come up with a custom schedule that best fits what they want to get out of Fan Faire. For instance, I did not participate in any of the tournaments because I mistakenly thought that you had to have max level characters on those games and/or bought those games. I also thought for some reason that they were PVP tournaments. Additionally, I only participated in the EQ2 live quest because I thought I was only allowed to sign up for the live quest for the game in which I signed up for Fan Faire in. I think I could have had even more fun if I had participated in some of the tournaments and played around with some more of the live quests. Edit: It did come to my attention that there was an info booth but in my stupor I did not see it. Can we get them to have feathers over their head next time?
  • I would really have liked it a lot if (as stated above) the Station store had more unique items. I love to collect little knick-knacks like bobble heads, action figures, pens, pencils, stationary, calendars, etc. Having more options would boost your sales in that department for sure. Also, more girly items please! Even the shirts didn't have a very good selection for females. Now granted, I totally understand that's not a majority of your fan base but having the option for at least a few items here and there of like babydoll tees with cool artsy SOE game prints would be fab. I'd buy all of 'em (well, one each in my size).
  • During the banquet and sitting in the far back, it was REALLY hard to hear or see much of anything. Having those screens like mentioned above would be a great addition for next year. 
  • During voting for the costume contest, it would be nice to see some other way for us to vote. Way in the back I'm not sure you guys were able to hear us and some people mentioned that they thought the vote went a different way. Maybe have us text in our votes ala American Idol style or something so you can get a more accurate number. Also, having a costume contest consolation prize would have been cool, too. It looked like everyone put a lot of effort into their costumes and I feel bad that some left empty handed (or pawed).

Overall:

I had a TON of fun and was so happy that I was able to attend. It was the best event I've ever been to and you can be sure that I'm going to tell all of my friends about how much fun I had so that they go with me next year. There was a great variety of things to do - everything from having fun to learning new things and getting to ACTUALLY talk to devs. Thank you for such a wonderful event - I'll see you all next year for sure!

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Old 07-11-2011, 11:48 PM   #4
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Keep it coming, folks! So far I agree with EVERYTHING that you three suggest need improving, with the possible exception of moving it from Bally's in Vegas (for reasons of expense, convenience and having worked out all the myriad technical issues that dogged us every time we changed venues, which I will elaborate on for your consideration when I give the rest of the response, hehe).

After about a week, I'll get a proper response together to cover it all, to ensure that we are not repeating ourselves or missing anyone!

;-)# Brasse

...in fact, I'ma gonna STICKY this post, as these three notes are loaded with all the right concerns. Thanks!

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Old 07-12-2011, 12:16 AM   #5
Yaviey

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SOE-Brasse wrote:

Keep it coming, folks! So far I agree with EVERYTHING that you three suggest need improving, with the possible exception of moving it from Bally's in Vegas (for reasons of expense, convenience and having worked out all the myriad technical issues that dogged us every time we changed venues

Maybe you can ask for better security measures or something next time and that would help instead?

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Old 07-12-2011, 01:33 AM   #6
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Lets start with the cons!

  • I got labled as a stalker by brasse on thursday, I didnt even know I was doing it. I avoided you like the plague after I found out.  I'm sorry, I was just trying to ask you a question! SMILEY
  • Security needs to be tightened, I didnt hear about the theft from larry till I got home, but someone from my group had a cell phone swiped during the eq2 quest
  • A bit of a break inbetween panels would be nice
  • More live quests for tall people! Although I did get a nice cheer from everyone as they watched a 6' 8" guy try to limbo and fail miserably
  • Defenitley need to patch the video camera into the main screens during the addresses
  • Give Ash more helpers, I think she was on autopilot on saturday night, I wouldnt be surprised if she was found in the convention hall passed out on sunday morning
  • Theres got to be a better way at getting into the speach and dinner events, but I don't know how.
and now the pros!
  • Ash told me everything would be ok at the pool party after brasse labled me as a stalker earlier in the day
  • Smokejumper and all the devs were very personable and didn't mind being pulled aside for a minute to listen to your odd request (vah shirs in eq2!)
  • Everyone else was very personable and friendly, I still owe some of you gm's drinks
  • Live quests were very fun, guides did a great job delivering, managers did a good job organizing it
  • Brasse did a great job at hosting, you kept a great pace during the events and were quick on the wit
and now some recomendations
  • Cash bar in the panel rooms; The last Q&A can be labled drinks for answers, It would be very fun.
  • More vendors, a little out of your control but someones got to be pitching something that can fill up that room.
  • More loot, I had money to give away let me buy stuff (I loved larrys table as well as the silent auction, although ash still has to call me about my piece that went missing)
  • Gamers are generous (At least I am) I was surprised there wasn't some sort of charitable organization or causes to support there (I would be into helping with that, I had some further ideas to expand on this one if someone likes it as well)
  • Make some of the ID cards for employees bigger or easier to recognize, I know you were wearing shirts (maybe the shirt can say what they worked on), but I was pulling tags around left and right, I ran into the director of art and animation that way, surprise! ( he was again very nice to speak to)
  • I'm surprised you didnt pull the costume contestants to the green screen for better pictures before the dinner
I have some pictures too I have to finish working on before I can upload

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Old 07-12-2011, 03:37 AM   #7
rom101

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My only suggestion for next year...Naked Jim Lee wrestling for everyone!!! 

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Old 07-12-2011, 03:39 AM   #8
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rom101 wrote:

My only suggestion for next year...Naked Jim Lee wrestling for everyone!!! 

Hmm...I'd totally pay to see that :3

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Old 07-12-2011, 03:40 AM   #9
absor

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ragefighter wrote:

/snip

One thing that that I would like changed that you would have a little more control over would be to have a small brake between panels (this might not work because we always have a big line of people even at the end)  maybe have water in the panel room (was in the eq2 room only) or better but less practical a bar.

/snip

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I'm sure the devs would like this idea too.  SMILEY

A

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Old 07-12-2011, 03:56 AM   #10
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This was my second fan faire and after learning a lot of what to do and what not to do after the first one I was better prepared!

Pros - keep them up!

  • Love the approachability of the devs.  Last year I didn't really make much effort but I did this year and was even able to thank a few for advocacy of changes I enjoyed (like boosting Illusionists to being fun again!)
  • Brasse as MC was win-win!  This is one thing I recommended last year and I hope remains.  Funny, relevant and did well keeping things moving.  I was not a fan of the past years' MC but it wasn't all his fault, just not a fit for SOE FF.  I also enjoyed getting to have a drink with a few including Brasse, all are fans of the games and it shows.
  • Reasonably priced accomodations, especially for Vegas!
  • The tournaments and quests were a blast.
  • The panels were very informative and enjoyable to participate.  I learned something new and got excited about what was coming in each one.
  • Game room to play my and other games if I choose for free, even to check forums and news on the Internet was bonus.  $14 a day Internet access is paaaaainful so this was very nice, thanks!
  • The shinies (gold coins) was a fun plus, I enjoyed that.
  • Free give aways, every one loves those!  Keep them coming!
  • Line up mics for questions was a LOT better than the roaming mics of last year, that was chaos and took too much time.
  • Having free bottled water available in all event rooms was great as hydration was important.

Con - recommendations

  • With all of the wide open spaces in the main hall (with the game room, prize wheel, green screen) it would have been nice to have a lot more couches and chairs to sit in.  There were more than last year it a great touch but more would have been nice if at all possible.
  • I know some folks LOVE karaoke but having it in the same room with the game room was beyond annoying for those of us that were grouping up and playing.  Moving that to another room would have been nice but not the end of the world because it's good to keep all folks in the same room.
  • While I understand the venue choice given budgets and pricing (including the very reasonable accomodations considering typicaly prices in Vegas) a nicer location would be cool.  Walking over to Ceasars and seeing the difference really blows me away but I completely understand and Ballys is fine.  This is a minor point because I understand.
  • Time between panels would be awesome as has already been stated.
  • The presentations need to be either on bigger screens or use BIGGER fonts.  Sitting in the back at times meant I wasn't able to read anything on the screens... at all.
  • Snacks would be cool but that might be asking a bit much... still, doesn't hurt to ask!
  • The vendors were nice but the more the merrier (within reason of course, heheh.)
  • This is petty cause the food was great but a potato option would have gone a long way for us non-salad eaters, lol!
  • Cameras on the costume contestants would have been awesome, I'm sure we were all thinking this, especially those in the back!
  • Yeah, I agree with the pool party ending... I remember last year it said it ended whenever but whenever was 11:00 PM, three hours after it started.  =P  If it's for noise, etc, then allowing us a space to hang out afterward would be nice.
  • A better map in the mobile phone app (last year's map was a lot better and easier to read on the small screen compared to this year.)
  • Would be nice to do something about the massive lines but I'm not sure you can do much, these folks are trained to camp!
  • More give aways during the event.  I think the fan faire survey gave away 3 items total though Sony gave away quite a bit more for theirs.  Just a thought (the prize wheel was great but I was mostly getting items the only my kids would really want.)

That's all I have for now.  If I think of more I'll come back but all in all this was a great event and I really enjoyed it this year, much more than last year.  I was iffy this year but I'll definitely be going again next year.

Thanks for all of your hard work!

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Old 07-12-2011, 05:04 PM   #11
Saroc_Luclin

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Another suggestion, touched on by others. In the grand ballroom where you have the vendors set up, you should have a simple snack store, with your standard snack foods (chocolate bars, chips, maybe a cooler with pop/juice, pretzels, gum, etc...). I remember sitting there a lot of time and thinking this would be a great place to have a way to buy that stuff instead of running all the way to the check-in desk. Even if it was just the hotel having a worker there with a cart of stuff during the day, it would probably be a good money maker. Having the couches/beanbag chairs and the bar stools in there were great too.
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Old 07-12-2011, 07:41 PM   #12
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This was my first time to come to the fan fair, and I have to say that I loved it.

The pool party was awesome.  I am curious if Eothyl was one of the bikini goers that was running around the pool SMILEY

As for anything I would change, I simply did not enjoy Ballys.  The food was over priced and under quality.  There were no buffets, and this was Vegas... the home of buffets.  I mean really.  But, plain and simple, nearly every Ballys staff member I ran in to was rude. 

I have been to Las Vegas numerous times in the past, and I have to say that Ballys is the worst of all of the resort hotels I have stayed at yet.

Linda you were awesome.  I loved getting to meet Domino finally (Yay tradeskills!).

Oh... the wizard with the staff at the EQ panels was cracking me up.

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Old 07-12-2011, 08:11 PM   #13
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htmlgod1 wrote:

As for anything I would change, I simply did not enjoy Ballys.  The food was over priced and under quality.  There were no buffets, and this was Vegas... the home of buffets.  I mean really.  But, plain and simple, nearly every Ballys staff member I ran in to was rude. 

I have been to Las Vegas numerous times in the past, and I have to say that Ballys is the worst of all of the resort hotels I have stayed at yet.

Ballys had one buffet which was for breakfast, think dennys quality.  The Paris which connects to ballys and was about a minute walk has a buffet on the right hand side it usually has a line out the door and is a few feet away from tree bar.  All food is overpriced and under quality thats vegas though.

If your going to eat good food in vegas, be prepared to drop alot of money (buffets are not good food imo) but why do that when you can go back home and eat good food for better prices, but that might just be because I live in San Francisco where thats true.

Next year I might try to stay at the paris though, you guys made it sound like it was a few miles away, and you had to stay at the north tower to get there quickly.

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Old 07-12-2011, 11:46 PM   #14
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That's true and I haven't considered that.  You can walk from Paris to the convention center easily in 10 minutes from room to main hall, all indoors.  From my reckoning the cost will quite a bit more over Bally's and honestly... I was only in the room long enough to sleep and shower so a bed is all you need.

I would have liked a buffet as well but I agree it's not always the best food.  There are a lot of options out there for eating though the more you're willing to spend the more options there are (I had a good meal at Bally's Steakhouse though it ain't cheap!)  However, having been to a good number of large cities around the world including the US this is not an unusual occurance.

I definitely have mixed feelings about Bally's.  When I walk into Ceasar's I'm impressed and say to myself, "why can't we do it here?  This is awesome!"  which is immediately followed by, "Well, I bet it would cost a LOT more and would cost me a lot more as well."  So... since I'm not made of money I'll take what I can get and if that money saved gets us more events, prizes, food, etc, etc, then that's okay.  There are worst places it could be done.

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Old 07-13-2011, 11:54 AM   #15
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I would love to see snacks and small meals in addition to a cash bar in the event space. Having a place to to grab a quick pre-made salad, a fruit cup, a hot dog, a slice of pizza, etc, would be absolutely wonderful.

If not possible to have the costume contest streamed on the big screens, having still shots of the costumes taken and put up (1-2 shots per costume) would be a decent alternative. It would be extra cute if the stills were green screen with the backdrop of the game the costume comes from (or participants choice if from none).

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Old 07-13-2011, 01:33 PM   #16
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Pros- Everyone from SOE was approachable and considerate. 

I enjoyed what events I was able to attend.   See below about customer service.  They treated me like a Queen, actually all the people from SOE did.  Very nice.

Thank you for allowing the people at the costume contest to get a chance to find a seat, relax and eat before lining up.

I loved all the different things to try, and the fun prizes at the banquet. 

Getting a formal chance to meet people in real life that I have played with for over 10 years was wonderful.  In the past we have organized informal get togethers at Ren Fests in Kenosha WI, and Harrisburg, PA, etc.  but this was nice.  We still did informal things like have a lot of private parties in a huge room one of our guildies got. 

While I love my home near Pittsburgh, PA, I think we should continue to just leave that to the furries, and keep the SOE Fanfaire in Las Vegas.

It was in Las Vegas!  I never thought I'd ever get to go there in my lifetime. 

Cons- We did need a buffer between events.  I had been looking forward to the live quest, but missed my chance to get in it because I was asked to stay after for the Customer Service panel.  My team won too.. I hope why I stayed pays out!  EDIT:  Wow, when the customer service manager gives you his card and says contact him, and he'll fix it, he means it!  I figured I'd get a voice mail or a someone else who would refer me, nope, I called, and got, "Scott," with an attempt at an instant fix of what I needed.  They know for sure it's a bug now, but hey, as long as it gets fixed eventually.  Nice thanks! 

We were supposed to get a green screen photo.  When we got our group photo taken we were told to come back to get our print outs; everyone would get one (yes I understand the exception when all but 30 people from our server showed up at 3:00 PM on Saturday to get a picture).  When we showed up I had to bat my eyelashes, and beg and plead and do most everything in the book to get 6 print outs for the six people there.  I did get them though.  I think they were just busy as heck trying to get all of it in.

There were alot of shadows on peoples faces in our photos.  They fixed the people getting cut off, but the colors on our costumes and completely shadowed out faces on the photos were unacceptable.  I still didn't care that much, it was my very favorite thing there!  I looked forward to it for years.

The food at the banquet (Ballys) wasn't very good.  I had heard that from a person who worked for Ballys years ago.  The savings of using Ballys was worth it I am sure.  I liked the hotel very much, and I lived in the pool every morning.  I assumed Vegas would be expensive.

We need more items at the store.  I know it's all about video virtual stuff, but still that was so disappointing.  I guess with the lack of advertising for Everquest I should have known.   I seriously would buy stupid hype stuff, like a lot of it.  More Iksar things.. female Iksars.

The artist getting robbed was disgusting.   Security would be worth the price.  I'd love to get my hands on the person who robbed him.

I would like to see a panel in the future about what you are doing to keep children safe as they play your games.   As a teacher in real life I am constantly reminding students about their identities on Facebook, etc.  There are so many internet predators out there that I would like to be certain that SOE is doing all in their power to keep their younger targeted customers as safe as possible.  Even playing Everquest when it first came out I would often come across teenagers who would share just about anything with other players.  I was constantly warning them too.  Children and especially teenagers like to reach out to adults other than their parents as part of their development of becoming men and women.  I have a lot of concerns about on line entertainment as it was presented at the opening.

I am sorry I confused the gender of Dwarven cutie pie.  All softskins look alike to me.

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Old 07-13-2011, 07:08 PM   #17
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I stayed at Paris just for a little more than what the soe rates were for Bally's. Even ended up with a mini suite with two walls of windows , one with a great view of the eiffel tower and paris pool and the other overlooking the Paris balloon and the Arc de Triomphe.Paris is much quieter up in the room areas. Also is nice to be able to grab breakfast on the way to Faire and there are like  6 places to eat breakfast in Paris and several 24 hr places to grab a meal.Its just a couple minute walk to the convention area too and that's coming from someone with health issues and a cane.

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Old 07-13-2011, 11:03 PM   #18
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Irish wrote:

I stayed at Paris just for a little more than what the soe rates were for Bally's. Even ended up with a mini suite with two walls of windows , one with a great view of the eiffel tower and paris pool and the other overlooking the Paris balloon and the Arc de Triomphe.Paris is much quieter up in the room areas. Also is nice to be able to grab breakfast on the way to Faire and there are like  6 places to eat breakfast in Paris and several 24 hr places to grab a meal.Its just a couple minute walk to the convention area too and that's coming from someone with health issues and a cane.

How was the Paris pool?  I missed it on my swimming pool tour of Las Vegas  I love them all!
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Old 07-14-2011, 01:25 PM   #19
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Sadly, I wasn't able to go to Fan Faire, but here is my feedback about experiencing it at home through the Internet.

Community Team - you rock!! You did a great job of updating your twitter and facebook pages to let people know when there were new live feeds happenings. That said, I refuse to use either data mining site, so personally I would have prefered to follow on the official SOE forums. The forums were also moderated very well, with timely stickies and consolodation of threads to help us keep track of things. The community team panel was informative and enjoyable. Also, I think you guys did a good job with the live podcast as well, being live and all.

Listening to the opening address in the voice system of EQ2X was great! It allowed me to craft while sharing in the community updates as they happened. (1-9) chat was full of people talking about the address, making jokes, and having fun. I'd love to see more of this kind of thing in the future, where possible.

Stickam - great idea, but for people like me who pay top dollar for slow as stink internet, because that's all there is in the area, having the ability to buffer upto 10 minutes on the live feeds is a must. Without buffering, I couldn't watch any of the live feeds at all. I had to keep hitting F5 on my "SOE Fan Faire 2011" youtube search until the feeds were posted there.  My net seems to be able to stream audio ok, so it would be neat if Stickam offered the option to stream only the audio component of a video (or buffer the live video feed by 5 or 10 minutes) for folks in my situation.

The panel I enjoyed the most was Larry Elmore's! I didn't even know who that "Larry Elmore" character was when I downloaded the video from youtube, thinking perhaps he was a comedian or something. Well, did I ever get an education! What a great story teller and candid man he is. It was neat to hear "an artist's story", so thanks for having him at Fan Faire.

I'd have to say that a close second favorite panel was the EQII Q&A panel. Could you guys pack more devs into a small space?! If ever there was a "dream team" of developers who are enthusiastic and genuinely interested in their community, this is it! So many things to be excited about here and it's obvious that the Everquest franchise in good hands with Dave's lead and so many other devs who were eager to answer questions and get involved.

After watching the Planetside 2 panel/Q&A, I completely can not understand why anyone would say anything bad about Smed! lol... he was practically giggling with a bubble ooze of gamer glee as he held back as hard as he could from telling us outright that PS2 will be released on Playstation 4! lol... (cue speculation on release dates!). I mean, really, Smed seems like a genuine guy who cares about his work and shares a real interest in it. I appreciated his encouragement of Matt throughout the panel, helping him to over come a little bit of nerves and keep in the panel flowing. And Matt, well there's a young man that loves what he's doing and that is great to see! I am looking forward to helping the community work with SOE on this project; Planetside 2 will be a great community driven game!

Brasse was an excellent hostest, who looks great in a beard btw!  lol... Rock on, Knight of the Old Dwarven Republic!

Finally, it was nice to see so many folks come and show their support for SWG one last time, be they devs who are on new projects or great members of our community from the past, like Pex. All good things... Thanks for giving the SWG fans and devs such a nice chance to "wrap it up" together. It would have been a shame to have held back the cancellation notice until after Fan Faire. So... thanks SOE, it meant a lot to many of us.  

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Old 07-14-2011, 04:34 PM   #20
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Had a great time this year.  I want to personally than Joel Sasaki for helping us get teh EQ2'sDay cast up and running with the SoE Stickam stream.  We had a lot of fun doing it, though we might move the show to friday or saturday next year so that some panels have already gone on and we can actually share more information rather than just hinting at it SMILEY

Some of my coments that relate to my experience as well as other people posts;

Stickam - A little known fact for those who are on slower connections or have buffering issues with stickam, there is a button on the top right (I think, its there somewhere though) that pauses the video feed and only streams the audio.  While it isn't as cool to only hear the stream and not see it, it beats having to let it buffer every 5 seconds.  Even dialup users can stream the audio only with little lag/buffering.

Bally's - It is not the greatest hotel on the strip, no questions there.  If you take a walk to some of the other hotels in the area, it seems downright lame compared to them. However, it is one of the cheapest without going off the main strip.  I see people comparing it to Cesars Palas and kind of laugh to myself.  Bally's costs up $80 a night for fan faire, Cesars Palace is around $250 a night for smaller rooms.  Heck even where I live, in the middle of nowhere, a hotel room can cost $100-200 a night depending on the time of year, so Bally's is cheap.  With most gamers being on a budget, that is always a good thing.  This all goes without saying that the convention center is right on top of the North Tower hotel rooms, making the walk to and from your room fast and easy.

SoE Fan Faire in Vegas - I personally like Vegas.  It gives us a lot to do in the off hours where there are no panels or events going on.  It lets us come early or leave late and still have a vacation on top of just Fan Faire.  Flights from most places in the country, and quite a few from outside it, are cheaper in general to Vegas because it is a tourist hotspot.  Combine that with the fact that it is within reasonable driving distance to SoE HQ in San Diego (its not cheap to transport all that equipment around for FF, not to mention not needing to pay airfare for all those SoE employees), and the location makes sense for both SoE and us Gamers.

Food in Vegas - Can't really argue this one.  Food in Vegas in expensive.  There are alternatives out there if you take the time to look around or work them into your busy schedule.  There is a small grocery store across the street from Ballys (under the monorail track) that sells stuff for pretty much the same prices as you find at home.  Buy snacks, drinks, and things that don't need to be refrigerated and cut out a meal or two a day at resteraunts.  Bill's across the street has a nice steak breakfast (from midnight to 6am) for only $8.  The sidewalk Cafe in Bally's has a reasonable breakfast buffet (with a limited selection though) for $12.  Even better is the buffet in the hallway leading to the Paris hotel that has an amazing selection (breakfast, lunk, and dinner though dinner is a bit more expensive) for $14.

Those are just without leaving the immediate area.  There are many other places you can find that are reasonable as well if you take a bit of time to explore.

On to the fan faire itself;

Likes:

- Brasse was the best host to date.  She kept things moving along, kept us laughing with her improv and jokes even when things weren't going acording to plan (lost the list of contestants, lol).

- Devs and other SoE staff wandering about and mingling with the players.  Its always great to see them around and know you can just walk up and start a conversation with them.  They are always avaiable for a discussion or willing to pose for pictures and things.  It's great to see that level of interaction with the comunity.

- The couches and Fatboys around for players to lounge in were an awesome addition.  much better than the platinum lounge from last year.  More would be nice, but it is a great improvement over previous years. (still trying to figure out how to fit a fatboy in my luggage to sneak one home next year... no one would notice right?)

- Having all of the EQ2 panels in one room was great.  While I agree with others that a small break in between panels would be nice to grab a drink or hit the restrooms, it was great to be able to stay in one place and have the panels rotate thru without having to go searching for a seat every time.

- Live Quests. While I did not get the chance to particapate in the live quests this year, everything I hear from the people who did says that they went very smoothly and didn't have the bottlenecks that plagued the previous two years quests I was in.  Great job to the teams who planned and playtested this years quests.

- Kareoke. I have good and bad things about the kareoke. I'm glad they went with a new DJ for it this year, his equipment was 100x better and he was pretty personable as well.  The sound this year was infinitly better than last years fiasco.  My only complaint was that it was way too loud.  A great sound system doesn't mean that it needs to be cranked up to 11 all the time.  Half the volume would have still sounded good and not left up with bleeding ears by the end of the night.

- The Green Screen guys never fail to bring us new backdrops that look great on our photos.  They went above and beyone when our large group of friends posed together for a couple shots and they printed us out 15 copies of the picture so that everyone got a copy.  Awesome display of making the customer feel special there.  i hope they continue to expand there selection of props in the future as well (bows for all us poor rangers anyone?).

- The banquet buffet was good again.  I think it was the same menu from last year but thats fine.  So much better than the terrible mexican attrocity that was the 2009 banquet.  it seemed a bit more organized this year and was less of a mad rush to the lines.

- The Comic shop vender was great. Not only a good tie in with DCUO, but his selection of games and others things were a great addition to the Fan Faire.  The live game demos and tournaments were a lot of fun.  I'm just disapointed that I didn't get to pick up a copy of Ascention while I was there (he ran out of stock and forgot to bring the last copy over from the store SMILEY )

Cons:

- Sound Quality of the events on the main stage. Not sure what the issue was, I do not remember it from previous years though.  the sound quality from the comunity address adn the banquet ceremonies was terrible.  It had a really bad echo to it that not only made it difficult to understand at times, it made recordings of these events almost inaudable.

- Lines at the Banquet. I'm sure that there is little that can be done about this, but we sat in line for well over an hour and listened to a couple calls for people in line to squish together because the line was all the way out into the casino, all the while looking into the giant emty room as staff and guides walked past the line and entered.  The idea came up more than once among the people in line, why not let us in a bit early, keep the buffet tables close, but the bar open?  It seems like a big loss of money to have all of these people just standing around wainting in line while they could be getting sttled into their tables and buying drinks from the many bars set up in the conference room.

- Placement of Bars.  Not sure is SoE had any say in this, might have been a hotel thing, but this year they placed two bars right in the middle of the main conference room where the comunity address and banquet were bein held.  While this is a convienient place for those who don't want to walk far to get a drink, it was right in one of the best places to sit and watch the stage as well as record video.  Why waste such a prime seating location?

- Swag Bags. While someone is going to yell at me for complaining about free stuff, I don't consider the swag bags as free really.  They are figured into the price of your admission.  In the past we got some really cool things, and there was still some in this years, but it just seemed to be lacking as compared to things we have gotten before.

- The Pool Party was a lot of fun.  The rain seemed to get things off to a slow start but as the night went on, it started rocking.  Then just when things were at their peak, the music stopped and we were ushered out into the streets.  Kind of a letdown.  I can understand if it was due to the noise that late at night (but then again its vegas... it is louder at night), but maybe just cutting the music and letting us hang out for another hour or so with our frinds would have been a better way to go.  Again, probably more of the hotels fault than anything SoE could control.

- Security Guards. This one killed me. Security guards... at a casino... and stopping a theft wasn't their job?  Ballys should be ashamed of themselves for having these guys on the payroll.  I will give props to SoE for doing their best to make things up to Mr. Elmore.  I hope that this does not disuade him from being a guest at future events.  I'm ashamed to admit that someone in our comunity (they had to have a FF badge to get into that room) would steal anything, let alone from Elmore.  I hope if the person is ever caught, that SoE makes sure that persons name gets "accidently" leaked out to the rest of the players.

 - More Venders. I know this is due to a couple of different reasons, but there was a lack of venders this year.  I'm sure there is some big formula that they use to figure out costs, but they seemed a bit steep to me, even more so when you low number that took advatage of the offer.  I think a bit lower price would have brough in a couple new or returning parties and made more money in the end.

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Old 07-16-2011, 12:33 AM   #21
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I had no real problems with the 2011 Everquest convention, BUT Why not have a magician come in at the beginning or at the pool party and do some close up magic to all that want to see it? Or have a celebrity in makeup that is dressed up as a character of Everquest , or Everquest 2? I know both would probly cost some. I am planning to be at the Everquest convention in 2012 and depending where the location would be, I would be willing to help with that part and find a person that does magic and such, and would be willing to get a actor of such to dress up as one of the Everquest, or Everquest 2 or any of the games SOE has for Fan Faire.

So keep up the awesome job SOE-Brasse , YOU were AWESOME.

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Old 07-16-2011, 02:05 PM   #22
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I don't know about celebrity, but they had the girls out for eq 1 and 2 on thursday, and a joker as well.

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Old 07-16-2011, 02:15 PM   #23
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I know, BUT I do not like the Batman movies, I just like EQ 1 I do not even play EQ 2. SOE could have a magician that has magic  that goes with EQ1 and EQ2 and so on.

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Old 07-21-2011, 10:22 AM   #24
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Well, I'm not gonna rehash all of the things that was already given for feedback.

Just would of been neat to have an EQ1/EQ2 Lore Panel seperate from the content panel, much like it was done last year.

Also, that station store needs new stuff. Selling guides from EQ2 expantions from years ago isn't really gonna move.

Also Cronyn is always fun to meet. He's a good guy.

Overall it was as fun as it was last year, and I'll probably be going again in 2012.

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Old 07-21-2011, 12:07 PM   #25
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Other than what I posted in the past, Overall AWESOME I Shall be there next year, and be there much longer than I have done in the past.

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Old 07-22-2011, 09:33 PM   #26
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Previous Posts:

RagefighterLove the ranger movie!EothylThe Ranger movie was hilarious <3 thank you Jethal Silverwing!

You're very welcome, but giving credit where it's due.. my wife Elquinjena worked very hard on the video and considering we took a (normally) month long process and did it in 2 days.. I'd say she did a great job!

LIKES

  • The Chairs, Pillows and Couches were awwwwwesome!
  • All the Devs, GMs and really EVERYONE I spoke to from SOE was very nice, I had a chance to talk to alot of people who didn't know me, and they were all great.  until they got to know me, then threw me in the dungeon.
  • Karaoke DJ was very good this time around.
  • I spent a good half hour talking to John Smedly and his parents, he's a great guy, very personable, very friendly. Viva La Smed!
  • Water Stations were a life saver! and a money saver! Free water in a cup beats $5 Water in a bottle any day!
  • Brasse.. Everything she did.  Wow, girl, you were born for the MC job.

DISLIKES

  • Is there anyway possible to force them to sell 16oz bottles of soda for Less than it would cost for an entire case, anywhere else on the planet?
  • Long line for the Banquet.  But, there's nothing you are really do about that.
  • Vegas.. I ventured outside twice.. melted to a puddle that had to be ressurected by a passing cleric.

All and all, the 2011 Fan Faire was the best one I had ever attended, without question

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Old 07-24-2011, 06:43 PM   #27
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great event, horrible follow up with csr's/gm getting a fan faire item. 

opened the ticket roughly a week ago, still no item/response. *actually, I got a response since I sent another petition in on the first one, and they closed it due to it being a duplicate.

way to go sony! 

but again, it was a great time in vegas, other than being hot.. it was my first time there! 

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Old 07-25-2011, 03:28 AM   #28
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Couple minor things to add for consideration next year:

- A solo and a group tournament?  2010 we had the group thing which was kinda hard to pull off but was still fun and this year we had the Aether race (which I would like to see again next year!)

- A panel or two on EQNext, would like to see what's coming and hopefully enough information will be nailed down by the same time next year.

- Another day!  I know that's asking alot give you guys work through it all but it seems over just as it got started, heheh.

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Old 07-26-2011, 02:55 AM   #29
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This was the first time I attended the fan faire. I focused on the friday afternoon to watch the Dev team present the future of EQ2. A+ to the different presentations.

I only regret not to have been able to meet anyone playing on guk my server. Would be great to have on the schedule a moment when anyone playing on the same server could attend and meet. Just my two cents ... I would have loved to meet a few players I know by their character and guild names. I was the tall white haired french man very close to the screen on the lefthand side of the room on friday afternoon.

Have fun

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Old 07-26-2011, 05:54 PM   #30
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Ok ill notea few things off the top of my head since we are under a dead line to say stuff heh.

Schedualing was Great better than last years which was also great but this years was greater, sitting in one spot for 7 hours at a time was fine for me all that walking wears me out.

I bring this up Every year... Badges Badges BadgesOn one side we have Name server game info, which is fine Half the time, on the back nothing helpfull and in pics if it gets flipped and it will it dont show your name cause it gets backwards.

Put the Name on Both sides of the badge, there is nothing so important on the back that it should inconvenience us or ruin a picture imo

Water stations where great very nice thank you, but would be nice to have a vendor in the bazaar that sold pepsi or some thing. Maybe even bring in a snack or food of some kind of vendor the lunch breaks where nice.

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