In two months, over a hundred thousand nerds will be descending on San Diego for Preview Night like a horde of undead zombies. The two month marker is significant for those SDCC bound, because it begins the ramp up for Comic-Con related news and conversations. Like fresh blood in a sea of starved zombies, the chatter will swell into a fan-crazed frenzy by July. Veteran fans will be returning with managed expectations, clear agendas, and a set of priorities. However, many ‘noob’ will arrive with no idea what to expect or how to prepare. So here is my top ten list of what you should be thinking about 2 months out from the show.
1. Resale Badges
If you don’t have tickets yet, then you should be in full panic mode. The Comic-Con website just posted that the ticket ‘Re-sale’ will occur sometime in June (my guess a Saturday). These are the tickets that have been returned and put back into inventory. Sign up for Member ID to be notified of the sale date. It will also be the smallest amount of badges sold which means it will sell out in mere seconds. After this option, the only thing left is to try to volunteer for a vendor by manning a booth or helping with set up. Some volunteers also get comp badges so it would be good to suck up to one of them. Ingenuity, persistence, and hard work will be your allies if you don’t have a ticket. Praying always helps too ;).
2. ACE Parking
If you plan on commuting into downtown during the show, then a ACE parking will be your best friend. There is nothing worst than fighting the Gaslamp traffic during Comic-Con. You can literally circle for another hour trying to find open parking. You’ll end up paying a lot of money and end up walking from the border of Mexico (like I did my first year). Spots are limited so buy one now- purchase a parking spot on the ACE Parking site.
3. Double-Check Reservations
Make sure your badge purchase and hotel deposits have been processed as instructed. You should have been charges two nights already on your credit card – if not, you are in trouble. Check, double check, and triple check that all your reservations and transactions are complete. I’ve heard of many horror stories of lost hotel reservations- so don’t turn into a cautionary tale.
Hold onto your wallets- If you have never been to Comic-Con before, a number of companies offer items that you can ONLY get at Comic-Con. These ‘Exclusives’ are the most coveted of all that SDCC has to offer. Some have already been released for promotion, while others will follow in the weeks to come. Read my recent post about how to get an Exclusive and check out AwesomeToyBlog for a comprehensive list of current and future releases. Prepare to drain your life savings.
5. Tech Prep
Unless you are a Borg, you will need to prep your tech. I’ve already covered this in a few posts so I won’t go into a ton of details here. The highlights- make sure you have extended battery support, the right carrying case/backpack, and if you are going to use a laptop/iPad. You can read more on my Tech Prep post.
6. App Prep
Back in the early years of Comic-Con, all you had to help you was the Program Book, a compass, and a hunch. Now ‘con-going’ has changed because of the million Apps available for your smartphone. Whether it’s Zap-Kapow’s Guide to Comics or Autograph This, there are many Apps out there to make sure you are not caught unprepared. Check out my post on what Apps to download.
With just two months left, if you have cosplay (costume play) plans, you should be underway. Depending on complexity, an average costume can take a couple of weeks to many months to put together. The main thing you need to be concerned with right now is having enough shipping time if you have to order some parts. If you are ‘noob’ to Comic-Con, then taking this first step can be pretty intimidating- but fortunately, there are TONS of resources available on the interwebs. For instance, check out Sirene’s Cosplay 101 video. If you are not super crafty, then you may want to draft the help from a more experienced cosplayer. The cosplay community is very helpful so feel free to reach out. More cosplay tips to come in future posts.
8. Who to Follow
Nothing has affected my con-going experience than following the right Twitter accounts for Comic-Con. There are a ton of great super-fans out there that have committed themselves to help you maximize your SDCC experience. I have learned a lot from them and consider them honor colleagues. Ask them, bug them, and follow them into the heart of the SDCC beast. Plus, they will know all the great hangouts during the 4 days that you will want to know. Some to follow: @The_Con_Fluence @SDCCNerdsAttack, @TheNerdyGirlie, and @SD_Comic_Con
9. My First Time
The amount of amazing stories that come from the San Diego Comic-Con is the main reasons that keeps my inspired to keep writing for this site. I love meeting new fans, listening to their experiences, and sharing in their highs/lows. To me, SDCC offers a lot but what makes it so special are you all. So to honor you, I recently started a new section called ‘My First Time’. Thank you all for sending in your stories over the past couple of months (more to post soon). If you are a Comic-Con noob, make sure you read these stories to help you prepare for your first time. If you want to send your story in, check out my instructions post.
10. Great Moments…
One of the best parts of Comic-Con are the many surprises that happen in an around the con- especially in Hall H. The studios and celebrity guests have a lot of fun keeping us guessing and they make for some of the most memorable experiences at the show. I started a new section called ‘Great Moments in Comic-Con History’ to retell some of these stories. If you are a noob, you will see why so many wait overnight and battle the crowds to make it into the intrepid Hall H. Many more posts to come!
This is just the beginning. Now that we have crossed the two month marker, I will be posting all kinds of helpful tips, tricks, and reminders to help prepare you for the 4 days in ‘nerdvana’. Thank you for visiting and for all your RTs to my site. Con vets, please leave a comment about how you are preparing. Thanks and see you in two months!