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GuyWithCoolBackpack

Feedback about ReaperCon '16

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I enjoyed the con like usual because I love shopping for new stuff, taking new classes, meeting everyone, looking over all the work from various artists, and just hanging out.  

 

Since I never went to one of the events at the factory I am spoiled with the hotel and this year it just felt...cold.  I blame the location and the lack of carpet but sitting at the tables on Thurs and Friday with other forumites it just felt off at times.

 

My daughter had a great time Saturday with her class and has talked non stop about how much she learned and how good she did with her mini in the class. :)

I guess it felt homey to me as it felt more like the factory than being at the hotel.

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I had a blast. Thank you, Reaper!

 

The venue was pretty good. I miss the hotel days too, but if we've outgrown the hotel, we've outgrown the hotel. It was pretty noisy, but not as noisy as I was expecting when we walked in on Wednesday.

 

The food was fantastic, although FireElemental had some selection problems being vegetarian. The food truck outside was slower and more expensive than any food truck I've eaten at before but the food was magnificent. I was really sad I only figured that out on Sunday! One of our lunch stops was at the Braun's down the street and that was pretty good. They had ice cream, which was the important thing.

 

I can't speak for the vendors, but I liked how the vendor booths were set up. Made it easy to get around and see everything. The reaper booth was pretty swanky but I was a little sad the paint pokers didn't make an appearance. I wasn't a buyer for the resin Ma'al; I got in on resin Nethyrmaul because it was original size, but Ma'al didn't have that same appeal. I do hope that's a thing you do again, but with as many as you seemed to have left over I'd understand if it didn't happen again. Maybe if you took one of your awesome digital dragon sculpts and made it bigger? Or 3D-scanned one and zoomed it up? I dunno, I'd be into it. The random bones bits and pieces were great, though. Melt table was awesome as always.

 

Hearing, on the other hand... the minute you got into the gaming or vendor areas, you had no idea what any of the announcements were. Adding some speakers and pointing them backwards is a good idea for next year. We kind of missed out on the Bones 4 announcement but the banner and the displays made it pretty obvious you had some plans before that.

 

The class setup was pretty good. The lighting was by far the best of the past three years, which was great! The table setup was nice. It was hard to hear some of the quieter instructors in the mornings, but on the bright side, you kind of got 1.25 classes for the price of 1 as you listened into the class next to yours. (I ordered some bigger siblings of those Taotronic lights. I'm pretty excited!)

 

The gaming was a wonderful mess, like it has been the past few years. My PFS game went off as planned even though nobody signed up for it ahead of time. It was a little weird that classes didn't seem to be worth as much Reaperbucks as games though.

 

More speedpainting would be appreciated.

 

I was sad to find out that the communal paints weren't a thing this year. Was there an announcement about that that I missed somewhere? We'll probably be planning to bring our own next year but we've been wary of getting them unscathed through the TSA and depressurization.

 

I was amazed at how fast the awards went. Good job to the team! (And congratulations again to all of the contestants.) It was awesome.

 

I liked how the raffle went. I guess I'm biased but it seemed to be really well-run!

 

Looking forward to next year already... and man it's cold back in Pittsburgh.

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-More speed painting:  The fact that speed painting filled up within seconds of being announced every time tells me there could definitely be more speed painting events.

-Open Q&A for artists:  Perhaps just a little time when you could give any willing artist a Mic and let people ask questions of them.  Might need a moderator, though, just in case. 

-Painting Demos:  Maybe set up a camera and an overhead projector and let people watch painters work.  Or show off some paint formulas for interesting effects.  Or have someone show off different charactaristics of different paints (blues being pretty transparent, whites covering well, etc.)  Or an open viewing of youtube painting tutorials.  Just some random ideas. 

 

Painting demos! I've been to BlizzCon numerous times, and the artists stage is one of the best things they do. They have 3 tables with 3 giant screens behind them, showing whatever the current artists are working on. There's time for Q & A, or you can just sit and watch while they work. Something like this would be cool, even if it was just one stage/screen.

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So my thoughts on the venue:

 

1) I thought the men's bathroom was absolutely disgusting. It was a mess and often out of soap and paper towels.

 

2) I liked the classroom layouts, but I was often distracted by the announcements on the PA or by the other classes nearby if they got noisy. The curtains don't dampen sound.

 

3) I liked the set-up for the painting contest entries and for the vendor area.

 

4) I didn't get around to playing games this time around, but I walked by a few times and could see/hear that it would've been hard to pay attention to games or hear over them in classes near there.

 

5) I did like the food provided with the VIP passes. I liked the food truck, but was under the impression that there were to be multiple food trucks available to choose from so was disappointed in that.

 

6) I was a bit disappointed in the shuttle service to/from hotels as I arrived I thought there'd be more shuttles going back and forth at various times. I got lucky and the Marriott gave me a ride to the venue right before my first class so I could get in at 3:30 to register, say a few hellos, and run to class at 4:00. I had rides with the Melons and they are awesome.

 

7) I liked the ALL in one room set up for most of it, but again the classes suffered a bit from the outside noise.

 

8) loved how many vendors showed up. My wallet hates it. ::P:

 

9) I also wish there was an area to get tap water or a fountain as buying water can get expensive quickly.

 

10) I didn't see any paint availibe for us to use like last year while sitting around and socializing. It would've been nice if that would be readily available for us this year.

 

11) Is like to see next year have more hotel rooms made available right off the bat. I feel Reaper dropped the ball on this a tad bit. The hotel bookings at the Hilton went very fast. We need many many 20's of more reservations for the hotel room blocks set up well ahead of time. I know sometimes hotels won't release that many blocks, so maybe talk to the other Marriott and the Hampton to give us 4 hotels in a 1-block radius to pick from if possible.

 

12) all this being said, it's all rather minor to me and I had a fantastic time, I'll be back every year!!

Edited by ub3r_n3rd
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  • The venue lighting was the best I've seen at a Reapercon.

Yeah I didnt think about it but I painted a dozen minis there without the need of a lamp.... which i always need at hiome

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I liked the venue very much.  The lighting was absolutely better than at the HGI, and as a result there were far fewer cords to dodge.  The room in between tables was better as well.  You could move without feeling like you were molesting someone just trying to squeeze by.

 

To the people who were disappointed with the lack of available paint racks, I've been there where you didn't bring enough to paint.  I've gotten better at hanging out with other painters, and that makes a difference.  There was a big wad of tables in the middle of the room where the materials flowed pretty freely back and forth.  We're all fairly good about loaning stuff, as long as we at least vaguely recognize we've seen you wandering around the 'Con at some point.

 

I liked the food truck, though I only ate at it once and heard some complaints that it got boring day in and day out.  I don't consider that a major issue at all though, since there were nearby options.  If you didn't want one of those things, we all had refrigerators.  I packed cold drinks and in some cases sandwiches, all in a very small and easily managed cooler bag.

 

The only other thing I heard repeated complaints about from other 'Con goers was that they wanted more speed paints and Sophie Says.  I'm fine with the level of activity, but I like some chill time.

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There was Pho?!? Darn... Next time.

 

I went over to The Waffle House for a coffee to go. Took them 10 minutes. The coffee was weak but okay. There were 3 people behind the counter, and 4 customers, counting me. Would not recommend. 

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I had the same observation. I was in the gaming area the entire weekend and all we every heard was "Can we have your attention..." and then it was so muffled we couldn't hear what was being said.

 

I could never hear any of the announcements made during my classes in the shopping side or while shopping.  I completely missed the Bones 4 announcement and every single speed paint announcement went unheard except one.  

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Overall I enjoyed the con and thought the venue worked well.  There was lots of space and pretty good lighting, and we worked out the outlet access for those who had brought their own lamps.  The layout was good and there were no traffic jams in the aisles. 

 

Echoing what others have said:

 

-- bathrooms needed more attention, the ladies' was dirty on Wed night when we got to the meet-n-greet and didn't get much better through the weekend and my husband told me about the men's room. 

 

-- couldn't hear announcements unless you were right in front of the stage. Even in the classrooms on that side they were muffled. 

 

-- food truck was ok. I thought the food was good but the selection was very limited and I know several people walked away saying there was nothing offered that they could eat. 

 

-- I really appreciate the effort of having food brought in for the dinners.  I was disappointed with the cold take-out pizza. The BBQ was one of the best of the 4, but needed more vegetable sides.  The Mexican was good, but needed more vegetable sides.  The Saturday night dinner with the big salad and green beans was by far the best and I hope you get more like it next year. 

 

-- agree with the idea of flipping the paint contest area with the classrooms. 

 

-- I'm glad effort was made to announce hotel buses and factory tours and that there were a good number of departures through the day. 

 

-- The halloween candy was a nice touch, Adrienne.

 

-- The Fairfield was ok but it wasn't as nice as the HGI. Breakfast there was kind of sad looking but it was free. Only spent enough time there to sleep and shower, and it was the "quiet" hotel. 

 

-- the metal turned in to the melt table was pretty sad, too. People need to bring better stuff next year!  ;)

 

 

I really enjoyed getting to see everyone again, attach a few more names to faces, and just generally hang out.  

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There was Pho?!? Darn... Next time.

 

Pho One, just up the road maybe five minutes by car. It was good, but not as good as "our" pho at home.
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-- the metal turned in to the melt table was pretty sad, too. People need to bring better stuff next year!  ;)

 

 

 

 

but I turned in a pristine complete T'Rauk that was sitting in a box for 15 years.. ;)  DDS1 never made it to the melt table and helped pay for my mini and paint habit for the weekend..  

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-- the metal turned in to the melt table was pretty sad, too. People need to bring better stuff next year!  ;)

 

 

 

 

but I turned in a pristine complete T'Rauk that was sitting in a box for 15 years.. ;)  DDS1 never made it to the melt table and helped pay for my mini and paint habit for the weekend..  

 

 

Thank you for that, my demo guy got 99% of it!

 

Team OTL just couldn't locate the head.

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I enjoyed the Con immensely and my only complaint is a minor one.  As a vegetarian, I ended up going hungry at two of the VIP dinners, once because vegetarian options were not offered at the BBQ and once because the caterers "ran out" of vegetarian lasagna before the first faction was through the dinner line.  I grabbed food elsewhere after leaving the Con, so it was no big deal, but it's kind of a drag to pay for a meal you can't eat.

 

The Egg 

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My first con, and I loved it!  :wub:  :wub:  :wub:  Many, many good points, but I'll be a downer and only stick with the negative and critical.

 

You could feel that the convention center was formally a retail store from the rest rooms. A retail store has dozens of people present for less than an hour while a convention has hundreds for a whole day. The rest room requirements are not the same.

 

I played a faction D&D game every day, and our DM said that in that corner it smelled as if someone stuffed the walls with dirty diapers. He even brought air fresheners the following days (I recently got over a cold and my sense of smell is currently shot so I didn't really notice).

 

I agree with the others in thinking there would be more food trucks, though it did the job. Sadly, on one day where my D&D game went a bit long, it left before my game ended.

 

COFFEE! The convention really needed a coffee stand or nearby coffee shop. I was nodding off during Aaron Lovejoy's class on bases.

 

No secret that the acoustics weren't that great (woe to classroom 11). Thicker padding between classrooms or the games area would've dampened the sound to reasonable levels.

 

Hooray for the shuttle service. Sad that the real fun with the forumites were mostly after hours at the PEC. Next year if it's at the same place, I'll have to ride with someone.

 

And I only have myself to blame to not realize the party at the HGI fire pit later in the night. Only on Sunday was I there (and it was worth it!).

 

I would've love to take the tour, but schedule conflicts with the classes/games made it impossible. Again, more my fault for not scheduling sooner.

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