Back From BlizzCon 2009

BlizzCon 2009

Time flies when you’re having fun, I suppose – I’m back from BlizzCon 2009, and though I don’t quite feel ready to head back to work, and all the other responsibilities of non-vacation time, it’s good to be home.

My trip started off as the typical Marty-planned trip does: poorly.  I happened to hear about when tickets were being sold for BlizzCon 2009 only a few days before the first sale, but I wasn’t able to grab any of the tickets in the first round, as I wasn’t home that weekend.  My luck turned around somewhat quickly though, and I was able to get in and score a couple of tickets very early in the second (and final) round.  I also got two cheap plane tickets.  As was the case last year, this trip was to be for myself and my brother, to celebrate his birthday.

As the old saying goes, however, the best laid plans of mice and men oft go awry, and Spencer (my brother) found out only a week before the trip that his work couldn’t give him the required time off.  He was upset, and I was faced with a dilemma; I wanted to go on the trip, but I didn’t want to go alone.  Geeking out simply isn’t as much fun by yourself.  I felt bad too, since the trip was originally for Spencer.  So I could skip the whole trip and just spend the time off with him instead.  A friend of mine was attending the show this year, and he could pick up our goody bags if I chose to stay home.

After a few days of mulling it over, I decided I’d just go on the trip by myself.  I wasn’t entirely pleased with this, but I didn’t want the money spent on tickets for the show and for flight to be a complete waste.  This way, I would also be able to pick up our bags of junk myself, so my friend didn’t have to bother with it, and I could attend some of the panels of the show, which I knew would be interesting and fun.  I made some changes to my flight times, jumped on a plane, and made it down to BlizzCon for a fun couple of days.

Lucky for me, I didn’t have to go it alone after all; my girlfriend happened to have enough miles on her frequent flier rewards card for a free flight to Anaheim and back.  So my trip, which had up until this point, looked like it was going to be lonely and somewhat disappointing, actually turned out to be quite fun.  My girlfriend isn’t really into games, but she still had a good time as I showed her around the exhibition, explaining all the odd sights and sounds.  And we got to venture out and do some shopping, as well as just hang out and relax, something we’d both been needing.  I really appreciate the effort she took to come with me, and it was a great impromptu vacation!

But now we’re both back at home, and at work.  My new World of Warcraft pet, Grunty, is prowling around in Azeroth.  My n00bz is guarding the rest of the junk on the shelf in the computer room.  And even though I’d rather be off on vacation again, I’m happy to be back as well.  Hopefully my next vacation isn’t so long in the making, and better planned to boot!


  1. kc lc - Over a year ago

    I hope you brought back a birthday present for your brother. Maybe a t-shirt that says:

    My brother went to BlizzCon…
    but all I got was this crummy t-shirt.

    1. Martin - Over a year ago

      Heh heh, well I did, in fact, pick up my brother a t-shirt. It doesn’t have any catchy phrases on it though… he’d better like it, though, because I can’t bring it back!

  2. Mattthew_H - Over a year ago

    That’s good that your girlfriend was willing to go.

    I haven’t read that much from BlizCon, probably because there was about as much news from it as there was from this years QuakeCon (well, maybe a little more).

    1. Martin - Over a year ago

      It was a completely spur-of-the-moment thing, and she actually had a lot of other obligations later that weekend too, but she still found the time to go with me. I was happy she could make it, and we had a great time.

      I was caught up in the whole thing, so I didn’t really pay much attention to how much news was actually coming out of the conference and in to media outlets, but sites like seemed to have fairly good coverage of the whole thing.

  3. xot - Over a year ago

    I read that this year’s event was massively packed, even by BlizzCon standards. Glad to hear your mini-vactaion worked out.

    I tried to do one myself this summer, but it was a wash out and I lost money on concert tickets. Fortunately, I hadn’t bought the plane tickets before things fell through. I was really looking forward to seeing Zappa Plays Zappa with my girl. But, I’m going to try again in a few weeks because GWAR is on tour! I want to try to catch them on their home turf in Richmond, VA. Should result in an epic dismemberment and I’m certain she’ll enjoy it more than ZPZ.

    1. Martin - Over a year ago

      The last attendance numbers I heard were around 26,000 people! It was massively packed, but because they utilized all the exhibition halls (last year they used all but one), and organized better, it wasn’t as bad. I didn’t try any of the games they had for play this year, but a friend of mine who also attended told me that the wait times barely got over 10-15 minutes – a far cry from the hour or more from last year. Granted, last year was the first year Diablo 3 and StarCraft 2 were available for play, so maybe less people were interested in waiting to play, but I also heard they had a lot more computers this year as well, so I’m not sure how, but it all seemed to balance out much better this time around.

      The funniest part about having all these people in Anaheim for the conference was that it was easy to tell the Blizzard fans from all the other people on the street. Ignoring the telltale BlizzCon nametag, I’d say that at least 80% of the attendees donned what I call the BlizzCon Uniform: black Blizzard shirt (of various design) and blue jeans. I’m sure this is more an indication of the popularity of blue jeans rather than any kind of statement about the typical attire of a BlizzCon visitor, but it was funny nonetheless.

      I’m sorry to hear your Zappa concert tickets were a wash, Xot. Good thing you didn’t buy plane tickets, though… that always sucks knowing that not only are you not going to get all (or any) of your money back, but they are probably going to put someone else in your seat (and charge that person too).

      GWAR should more than make up for the loss, hehe. You’ll have to let us all know how the concert goes!

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