I’m not a Comic-Con shopper. Outside of a few shirts and posters I don’t go around the con hunting for exclusives and collectibles. Still, I love free stuff and getting to try out video games and the chance to get my picture taken with awesome stuff makes Preview Night a must for me. So this year I braved the exhibit hall for a full hour and fought babies, wheelchairs, and annoying booth employees to bring you my thoughts.
The exhibit hall can easily melt your brain to goo so even though I’ve been out of there for a bit, I’m still a bit blurry on all the details. Thus I’ve made a bulleted lists of the best and worst stuff in this year’s hall that popped out to me. Also, I was so overwhelmed by all the awesomeness I only took a few pictures so I recommend Joblo’s awesome posts to get your picture fix. Part 1 is here and Part 2 is here. Let’s get down to it:
- Lots of Free Stuff – Even though I didn’t stand in line for a long time to get a great spot, I still left the convention center with enough free stuff to satisfy just about everyone. Three bags, 4 posters, a poster tube, and much more. Booths seemed to have more of everything this year and few were left empty handed.
- Lots of Collector Stuff – If you’re the spending type there was a ton of great stuff to spend your money on. Everything from giant posters to limited comics to really random figurines lined the hall. Even though the hottest shops had huge lines, you know that Giant Galactus figure was worth it.
- Video Games – Almost every major game studio had a booth with many of the hottest upcoming games. Wait lines weren’t too long and the Playstation Move was surprisingly awesome. Plus they had Kids Bop the Game and some crazy dancing thing at the Ubisoft booth. Attendees + Dancing = Success.
- Marvel’s Booth – They recreated the freaking throne from Thor. It was gold and amazing. See video of it here. It was freaking shiny and epic. DC had a ton of free comics, but none of them were gold or shiny.
- Tons of Props – Thor’s Hammer. Cap’s Shield. The Iron Monger. Lego Hagrid. Etc. There are a ton of awesome things to get your picture with this year. If only there was no such thing as no touching rules.
- Variation – Booths like Fox’s Alien Anthology helped vary up the exhibit hall and give attendees a chance to do something different then sweating and being pushed places.
- The Crowds – I know this is always a complaint but in some areas it was really unbearable. I couldn’t tell if people were waiting in line or trying to move. It’s pretty obvious how that could be a problem.
- The CBS Booth – CBS actually had a booth this year. They also hired the most obnoxious lady in the world to be its spokesperson. Then they made people wait in line 30 minutes for a lea. Really?
- The Kids – I’m a very tall person so to look down and see little ones crawling around my legs like insects was a bit disconcerting. If you avoid the more kid-centered booths this might not be problem but I love my Fanboy and Chum Chum.
- The Lines – Some things had very small lines. Some had lines that took 2 minutes to find the end. As expected, much of the awesome stuff was in that second category.
- Too Many Bags – It felt like every single booth wanted to give me a bag. Oversize bags. Plastic Bags. Leather Bags. I don’t need this many freaking bags. I sense giveaways in the future. Also, what was up with 70% of the giant bags being Batman: Brave and the Bold themed?
- Where Are the Shirts? – Walking through the hall multiple times didn’t yield a single free shirt. Hopefully they’ll be a lot more given out during panels since the shirts are my favorite free thing at the con. Speaking of awesome free things, full size posters please?
Thursday is an almighty slog through Hall H so remember to follow me on Twitter for instant reactions and I’ll make sure to update the site with the latest SDCC news and wrap-ups.