Much like the fight for the throne of Westeros, if you’re not paying attention, if you haven’t gathered your resources, if you take a wrong step, you shall perish, but more than that, sometimes you’ll do all the right things and you can still perish. So this morning, at 9am PST, hundreds of thousands logged onto Comic Con’s badge registration page. In a mere 93 minutes, all of the passes were sold out, and the road to that 93 minutes was littered with bodies. Many people reported getting into the waiting room at a good spot only to be booted out by the server minutes later. Our group spent 20 minutes trying to register, half of it was spent refreshing before realizing that the page we’d left alone had loaded and sent us to the waiting room in #36889th place. Forty-eight minutes in and 4-day with preview night passes were gone, 55 minutes in and 4-day no preview night passes were gone, 61 minutes in and the Saturday tickets were gone, and by minute 72 the Friday were gone as well. After three and a half hours the customer service line shut down.
It was truly like an Olympic game, where a fraction of a second could count.
The true downfall of the system was how easily someone could be screwed over. For those people complaining about issues that they should have been prepared for by reading the SDCC site, they deserved what was coming to them. I’m not sorry to say that. I try not to join in on the hate for Comic Con because that’s just the name of the game, everyone knows how bad it’s going to be and it gets worse every year. The worst is for people who sat waiting in a room for hours staring at an unchanged number. During the entire badge sales time, the #SDCC hash tag was filled with people wondering what was going on and calling for an alternative instead of EPIC. Assuming that SDCC has a contract with EPIC, they should prepare for this every year, as the Con gets larger and the chances are made slimmer. Server sizes need to be increased, people need to be warned. There were a few people who signed on hours after and wondered how the tickets had already been sold. We had 7 people who wanted to get tickets and only 5 of them did (we had to abandon our friend’s significant others in favor of tickets). We worked off of five computers, and only one got through. It was only by the mercy of a Facebook friend who entered registration moments before us that we got the fifth ticket.
For those of us who got tickets, the battle was worth the trouble. We went out and ate our celebratory lunch and have nowcome home to watch Star Trek in true nerd fashion. But what about the unfortunate masses who didn’t get tickets? I’ll answer some of your questions now. Feel free to ask more below and post your nerd rages here. We weren’t far from nerd raging.
Will there be return sales?
Yes, but be aware these tickets are infinitely harder to score. If you were around for how bad it was today, you’ll know the returned ticket sales will be harder to get than surviving the Cornucopia at the Hunger Games.
So I’m basically screwed if I didn’t get tickets?
Yes? Well no. Zachary Levi’s Nerd Machine does events at Comic Con very similar to SDCC but on a much smaller scale. Last year they had awesome panels, like a Firefly panel and one on Doctor Who. If you are in the Gaslamp area, the general area around the con center is awesome, and if you decide to go to Nerd HQ for their panels, it’s still an awesome way to spend a weekend.
WonderCon tickets are still on sale, how do they compare? Should I get them?
Personally, I’ve never been to WC and this will be our first year, but I have heard that it is a much more intimate setting and less stressful. It has been getting a lot more promotion though, so I think if you have the chance, WonderCon is a great precursor to another try at SDCC next year! Also don’t forget, most major cities have a Con and those are by far less stressful than SDCC.
I was wronged, your batch file sucked.
So, they vastly changed their system this year from the previous year, the entrance “click to enter” button really messed the code up. I apologize for getting your hopes up.
I will leave you with some funny and motivating tweets from today, though definitely not all of the funny ones that we saw. These helped us get through one of the most traumatic experiences I have every year. For those of you who got tickets, we’ll see you at Hotelpocalypse in a few months! That’ll be loads of fun.