O. M. G.
Best BlizzCon ever!
After going four times, it was starting to feel familiar. Fun, of course, but not the same fresh excitement as the first couple times I went. That's why I decided to make a costume this year, to get backstage, onstage, and see and do new things.
Holy cow. It was my first cosplay. I had no idea how different the experience was going to be. I knew I would be in mild discomfort because of my Mira Han costume, and I had some idea that I would be waylaid here and there for photos. Here's what happened:
(Thursday before BlizzCon)
Went to pick up my badge in Hall E. Was mildly surprised to see a massive line of people. (Every other time, I have picked it up Saturday morning, and Hall E is almost empty.) Decided to pick up my badge early never again.
Staying at someone else's house. Had to get out before 7:30. Woke up on 6 hours of sleep, accidentally got locked out of the house without my phone. Got into makeup and costume in the driveway using my vehicle's mirrors. Thinking this day has not gotten off to a good start. Also, one of my LEDs went out. But it revived soon after and stayed good.
Showed up at 8:00, got in line, got asked for several photos. Hey, this is cool. Got let in at 9:00ish, but got turned away for EMT scissors in my repair kit. Seriously. They are specifically designed not to hurt people (no sharp points). Maybe they thought I could saw off someone's finger with them.
Fine, I'll believe they could be dangerous in Mira's hands.
Got in, but immediately had to go back out to find the costume registration booth. Got misdirected from one end of the hall to the other, finally found the booth, had a fun chat with the Blizzard guy manning the booth. Noticed signs of my quarry--Matt Horner was down as entrant #4! Yes! This is going to be fun. Mira gets to hunt down Horner. What could be more appropriate?
Tried to get back in. Got turned away (by the same guy) for having food and a soda can in my bag. He hadn't mentioned the food last time. Grrr. Dropped off the food at the vehicle, returned, and made sure to go through a different door. Had to have my brother lead the way, because my vision is blurry with my contacts (only one is prescription).
In! At last! Registered and good to roll! Wandered around and realized I had nowhere to be. No quest in the goody bag this year. No panels I particularly wanted to attend that morning. Started counting photos. Watched some StarCraft tournaments. Met up with
! Awesome to see her in person! She was a really cool person, and I don't doubt she'll make it into Blizzard one day.
Saw there was a voice actor panel.
SO excited! I looooooooooooooove Tychus' voice (that "whiskey-soaked thing"), and Raynor's also. And Mengsk's. And-- You get the point. I WANT THEIR AUTOGRAPHS! But the signing time overlapped my costume prejudging and photographing appointment at 1:35.
Scurried over there, watched the panel, jumped into the Q&A line, and summoned my best Mira voice for Jim Clotworthy, the guy behind Raynor's voice. "Jaaaaaames. . . . Have you seen Matthew?" It. Was. Awesome!
After a bit of banter that almost sent me into fits of glee, I waited to see if I could possibly squeeze in a signing before my prejudging. But the line was huge already. Noooooooooooooooooo!!! I was desperate. I have been waiting to meet these guys forever! I missed the last voice actor panel, and that had been years ago. Scampering to the stage, I plead my case to the voice director who hosted the panel. She was so sweet. (OMG, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!) She let me pop into the front of the line while I apologized and begged forgiveness. (Cutting in line is like one of those "not done" things in my book.) Got signatures from everyone on the panel. They were so cool! The guy who played Zeratul actually asked ME to take a photo with HIM! *dies*
One guy was late and popped in at the far end of the table as Jim was signing my poster, and he told me Matthew had showed up.
But I discovered it was actually Valerian. Jim! Matthew can't hide behind you forever! I will find him, no matter how many Scotty Bolgers he pays you with!
Exhilerated out of my mind, I rushed over to the prejudging. I met Daxxarri, and some other cool people. It was great! No sign of Matthew, though. . . .
Wandered around the con in an aimless daze of bliss (up to 30+ people asking for photos with me so far, and hey, for a first-time cosplayer, I was totally happy with that number) until the Rosewill costume contest at 4:00 (they had their own!). And guess what I found there. . . .
He actually ran from me, but I did catch a picture with him for proof! (I'll post it as soon as my brother gets it to me.) During the contest interviews, I introduced myself as Matthew Horner's wife. During his interview he was like, ". . . and she's not my wife!" Hahahahahahahhaha! That was fun. I also won second prize, a gaming router.
Had a costume failure. One of my shoulder pads came loose. Had to make emergency repairs in the parking lot. Also, had a water bottle leak in my main satchel. Fortunately, nothing important got soaked and repairs were made.
Giddy, I wandered around in more gleeful bliss until 5:45 . . . time to get to the Main Stage! Lots of waiting around with 99 other cosplayers in tight space. Heard one Blizzard crew member say it was like herding cats.
Chatted up the fellow cosplayers, met some cool people, had someone tell me they had watch my costume progress on Deviant Art.
I was like, "No way! People actually look at my DA page?" That was cool. I wish I had asked for her DA name. (If that was you, give me a holler!
Saw other StarCraft characters, like the infested Alexei Stukov, Sarah Kerrigan, Queen of Blades, female ghost, male ghost, Valerian, and marine Jimmy Raynor. I thought, how great it would be to get them all together and get a group photo. Well, that didn't pan out, but I did get to team up after the contest with Stukov. He was really cool. Got a few others, but they kept straying. Oh, and guess what? Matthew disappeared. No, I'm serious. It was hilarious. He blew out of there before I could catch up and I never saw him again.
Then Stukov left, and I found myself with the male ghost. Dude! That's guy's costume was crazy! Not only did he have EL wire lighting, when he spoke, he had that radio effect on his voice. And not only that, he could do sound effects with his rifle, like the sound of it firing, and the "Nuclear Launch Detected" sound clip. It also had a wicked laser sight. IT WAS FREAKING AWESOME! When people heard him talk, or when he started shooting people, people were instantly like "WHOAAAAAA!!!!" Their expressions were priceless.
And that was just his costume. He (Jaime) was the coolest guy! He let me borrow his sidearm (Mira desperately needed a weapon to pose with) and we were such a hit together, I didn't have a prayer of keeping track of the photos taken of us. We teamed up briefly with another Raynor (The next time I saw him, Saturday, he was drinking beer. I found this profoundly, hilariously, appropriate.) and a Sarah Kerrigan, as well as a female ghost. Someone started a trend of posing as our hostage. I'm not sure why it was so popular, but it was a favorite request.
Eventually, they all wandered off except for Jaime. He stuck with me for the rest of the night, and by the end, we agreed to meet up the second day. We made a great team, and he was such a nice guy, we became fast allies.
Ate my first real meal of the day, besides nuts and crackers: cold soup from a can on the floor of the hall. I was tired. I was hungry. I got accidentally locked out of the house in my pajamas. X( I fussed with the stupid keys like ten minutes before I had to get someone to answer the door. Thankfully, the owner of the house was gracious enough to not give me a weird look--pajamas, weird makeup, and my hair glued funny with hair gel.
But, it was all worth it.
Out of the house by 7:30, running on 6 hours of sleep again. Tired. My goggles have created welts on my forehead. Doesn't matter. The show must go on.
Ate a small bag of crackers when we got there just after 8:00. Didn't realize that would be my last meal for the next 16 hours.
Checked in with my ghost buddy and got the report that he would be late. He had to make field repairs to his lighting and sound systems. Ran around to some booths in the morning, watched some great semi-finals for StarCraft, and even as I was lamenting that I hadn't had time for attending panels to get my traditional Metzen and Samwise autographs, I accidentally found Metzen signing at a booth and immediately leaped in line. YES!!! Fortune smiles on me! He and the other artists there enjoyed the Mira costume, so that made my day.
My ghost final made it back into action, and our show went on the road. We went here and there, and it was pretty funny. We would be mobbed by a bunch of people for photos, then left completely alone, then mobbed again, and then nothing. It seemed like every time we tried to get a drink or adjust our costumes, someone would show up looking for photos.
He would often offer his rifle to people who posed with us, and--so cute--we posed with a little boy who was shorter than the rifle. It was hilarious.
A bit later, we posed with a little girl, and after we were finished, the girl timidly caught me away from the ghost and she asked, "Can I have one with just the girl?" It was ADORABLE!
AND!!! Ohmigarshk! AND a woman approached us at one point and said she loved my Mira Han outfit. Then she introduced herself. CHRISTIE GOLDEN! I kid not! Christie Golden wanted a photo with me and Jaime. OMG OMG OMG! I traded her a photo for an autograph, and I pleaded with her to write a novel about Matthew and Mira. Turns out she loves Mira, too, and she wasn't at all opposed to the idea of such a book.
In fact, she had been asked for one before. Please let it come to pass!!!!!!
I was having so much fun, I happily skipped most of the panels. I didn't want to split up the team, but I told Jaime I had to get Samwise's autograph, and he tagged along to wait in line with me. Met up with
and happily chattered until (after getting shooed out of the line into a new line) we finally reached Samwise. Like always, he was such a great guy. I asked him if he had seen Matthew, and he grinned and said, "Yeah, you know, I think I did. Yeah, he was just here, and then he heard someone say they saw Mira looking for him, and he split." Hahahahhah! It was great! I got a photo with him and Jaime. I'll post it.
I also got
's autograph on my event schedule with Metzen's, Lee's, Christie's, Samwise's, and others, because I have a feeling she'll make it. I always have.
The pressure is on now!
Jaime and I also ran into Songhammer, the guys who won the talent contest and performed live at BlizzCon! Got photos with them, too. They were fun! I wish them good fortune in their future endeavors.
I skipped the closing ceremony. Why scrap for a seat in the back when I could hang out with my brothers and my new pal and help more people create great memories? No contest!
In summary, I learned a lot about cosplay over those two days:-It is way more fun with a friend.-Comfort is critical!
I had to place a card from my wallet on my forehead to mitigate the goggle damage to my poor skull. Now I have three red welts instead of two. With pustules. It's nasty. And poor Jaime kept losing circulation to his hands and feet. If anyone saw me doing this weird left-handed handshake with him, it was because I was trying to get blood back into his hand. So yeah, plan carefully.-Bring water.
We drank tons of water that day, and neither of us had to use the bathroom once. We must have sweated ALL of it.-Make sure you can use the bathroom in costume without too much hassle.
Otherwise, bringing enough water might backfire.-Make sure your costume is durable.
Field repairs suck.-Eat.
By the time I got around to eating my first meal of the day and midnight, my body was so fed up with me I could barely eat. I think I survived off of glee and nerves, because I hadn't been hungry all day, but I was that night . . . until I got halfway through the meal. And we're talking good food, too, graciously provided by my oldest brother. My body hated me. Suck it up, body! Don't be a wuss!-Be nice.
I was really impressed with Jaime's patience and kindness with people, but at the same time, I couldn't imagine being any other way. I mean, if you come in costume, that's what you're there for, right? For them, not you. And Jaime put it well, pointing out that if you're rude while you're playing a character, you break that illusion and give them a bad experience. That's not fun. What's the point in it? What's more, you meet tons of great people, and being friendly can really pay off. Being a jerk NEVER pays off.
I hope we helped create tons of great experiences and memories for everyone we met! I never foresaw having such an amazing experience, or meeting such incredible people, or making so many people laugh and smile. We were photographed, interviewed, and videoed countless times. I missed most of the con (panels, booths, events), but I loved every minute of it and made a new friend to boot. This BlizzCon is going down as one of the best days in my life so far, topping all other BlizzCons.