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Messages - MikeTSA

First, I want to say thank you to the panel staff for being amazing this year. You all helped me avoid potential issues by being very quick to have tech support help out or being prepared in general to prevent any potential issues. If I could make one suggestion, is that maybe it's time to perhaps get projectors that support HDMI input? Otherwise, had a great time hosting panels again.

Since I didn't have to endure the registration fiasco, I won't comment on it other than I would highly suggest its time to seriously rethink the process, and research the various alternatives to find one that's better suited to handling the volume of con-goers FanimeCon attracts.
Saturday, May 26th, 2012
6pm-8pm, Panels I

First, we destroyed Zelda. Then, we conquered Resident Evil. Now we're back for our third year at Fanime to troll one of your most beloved video game developers, Square Enix. We're going to tear Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts a new one, along with a few other installments of your favorite JRPGs.

If you've been to any of our previous panels in this series, you know what to expect. However, this year, we're going to try to change things up. For starters, it's going to be more interactive, and more media will be presented rather than dull slides. We'll have videos and images to back up our arguments, but I'm going to also *try* to bring my capture equipment for my laptop so that we can actually, in real time, show off examples from the games in question. We're going focus primarily on the newer games like Final Fantasy XIII, Final Fantasy XIV, Final Fantasy Versus XIII, and the recent Kingdom Hearts games, but we'll reach further back for other stuff.

This is not just a one-sided panel, hence it is a debate. If you come, we'd like you to either argue our points, or defend the games in question during our presentation. For example, my friend is going to rip apart Kingdom Hearts, and I'm likely going to defend it by citing how good I thought Birth by Sleep was and steered the series back on track (until Re:coded, that is). To help out with this, here is a preview of what's gonna be said about FF XIII:

Final Fantasy XIII
- Linear design
- Visuals over substance
- Virtually no side quests
- Where are the towns?
- Poorly developed characters
- Limited control in battles

So, do some research/homework on the games we mentioned, and Square Enix/Squaresoft/Square in general. We might have some goodies to give away for those who participate.
In addition to a new episode, we have a few older episodes that are getting "updates", and they could possible be ready in time for next Friday - so there might be a new content overload.
No worries, the episode will be online to check out as always. If you're heading to AX this year, we'll be doing another panel then, too.
Friday, May 25th, 2012
7pm-8pm, Panels I

The staff behind's web series Pop-Fiction make a return to FanimeCon! We'll take a look at some of the more recent episodes involving Final Fantasy, The Legend of Zelda, Pokemon, and debut a brand new episode! Followed by a Q&A session.

Last year was sort of a test run for this panel idea, and we had a decent turn out for it being a relatively unknown web show at the time. However, after our AX panel last year, it's clear people liked this enough to keep doing them. Hopefully we'll raise some more awareness and have a better turn out this year. We're going to debut a brand new episode during the panel, take some Q&A, and there might be one more surprise in store.

If you have no idea what Pop Fiction is, just check it out below.
There are still a few mysteries that weren't totally addressed (or at least aren't translated yet). Hard at work trying to make this video portion happen, but in case that falls through, there is a back-up plan for the presentation part of the panel.

Edit: Video is not gonna happen, but there will still be videos present to help with the presentation. Also, one of the other prizes being given away are the new set of six figures of Link and Zelda from Ocarina of Time, Phantom Hourglass, and Skyward Sword:

Sunday, May 27th, 2012
8pm-10pm, Panels II

Nintendo finally revealed the official timeline for The Legend of Zelda, but that doesn't mean the debate has ended. Come learn just how the games' actually connect, and be prepared to discuss and argue over the finer points of the series' chronology.

Basically, the plan is to begin the panel with an overview video that explains the evolution of the timeline with each new release, and then it will shift over into revealing what the official timeline is and how the games actually connect. After that, we'll go over a few points of contention, and then turn it over to the audience to raise their issues or express their thoughts on the timeline. I am going to also try to bring almost all of my Zelda materials for reference (manuals, guides, boxes, other documentation) in case we need to fact check something since there won't be interwebs in the panel room.

Also, the plan is to give out some "prizes" to some of the best participants. One of these will be a copy of the Hyrule Historia - the Japanese Zelda encyclopedia that revealed the timeline and contains a ton of other cool info and artwork.
Thanks for the update.
It's been nearly two months and it's still not open as far as I can see. Since it's just over a month away, is there any update on this?
Well, it's on the panelists to be prepared and such. The fields you have to fill out are pretty comprehensive, too, so just writing an idea for a panel is something I think wouldn't cut it for getting approved over some of the more well thought out submissions. If I recall, there was a bit of a line on the wait list last year, so FanimeCon isn't hurting for panel submissions. Basically, I would suspect with FanimeCon's growing popularity, the panel submissions will increase and force everyone to submit their best stuff to get in, and also give their best during the panel so the staff are more likely to accept them back when they look those panelists up the next year.

Ultimately, it's just an application, and like any resume, CV, or application, you can make it look as good as you want (like a video submission), but it's how that person will perform that matters. You have to look for clues in what you have - did they take the time to use proper grammar and spelling, did they articulate their points well, etc. But again, people can put on an act just to get in the door, so raising the bar for what people need to submit could weed out those not serious, but also be limiting in some unforeseen way at the same time.

Again, in the end, it's up the panelist perform on their end come con time. Feedback is also an important part, and I know FanimeCon wants to eventually offer panelists a way to see their feedback. That would greatly help everyone so they could see the criticism and take that into consideration for future panels.
Thanks for taking the time to reply to all that. I know you guys work hard on scheduling the panels and such, and I appreciate the time and effort that takes. I felt bad that only one of the three panels this year drew in the crowd we were expecting, but it just means we'll work harder on our end here to come up with better panel ideas next year.
1) It would be awesome if you guys could allow people to bring their own games/consoles to the eGaming setup for free play.
2) Please move the panels into the actual con center and out of the Marriott.
3) Find a solution to the schedule mishap both on-site and online. Maybe prominently and clearly posting the schedule on the home page in more than just the "news" column or buried deep within the navigation.
Has eGaming always banned the use of your own console for free play? I can understand the reasoning to an extent - somebody has an explicit game or modified game with explicit content not suitable for all audiences - but I was told only your own controllers could be used, not even your own games. Rules on website only say don't bring your own console, but then it also says "For Free Play times, we will allow some use of personal equipment". That's why I thought I was able to bring some stuff this time, just not the console. I'd gladly sign something in advance to waive liability of damage/theft OR submit all contents in advance for screening if it meant being able to play our own stuff. A few of us wanted to play the custom version of Brawl I spent a lot of time on finalizing for Fanime, and it was all PG-13 or milder content, but when I asked about setting up at the info desk, they said it wasn't allowed. We hoped others would see it and want to join in and have some fun.

My friend also pointed out two people set up their own systems earlier in the day in the free play area (walked up with backpacks and just hooked up and played). The only saving grace is the Marriott actually allowed composite cables to be connected to the HDTVs, so we were at least able to play in our room.

Listen, this didn't ruin my Fanime or any nonsense like this, and this is a really petty issue in the grand scheme of stuff. I did still have a lot of fun at Fanime.
Some thoughts here:

1) Did Stage Zero actually screen any of the "videos" submitted for the Panel Promotion segments? I know I walked by on Friday a few times during the supposed time slot for that, but never saw anything of the sort happen.

2) Schedule thing really hurt some of the panels. After talking with some of the people after one of the panels, they all said they had no idea the panel was even going on, and only found it by walking by. I know many panels still were jam packed, but I think the schedule issue hurt many panels' attendance.

3) After doing panels at Fanime for 3 years straight now, I have to wonder will you ever move fan panels outright into the con and out of the Marriott? It honestly feels like we're pushed out of the way. Most other cons put video rooms in the hotels, and put the live programming in the con.

4) While I realize in retrospect I did a poor job naming/describing two of my panels this year, I also wondered about being more descriptive on the website. Yes, I know the programming guide is limited to X characters for the title and description, but maybe allowing a "longer" description on the web site? When we're forced to truncate our descriptions/titles down, we sometimes accidentally cut out good info.

5) One personal gripe, which I should have been more vocal about when I spoke with the staff ahead of the con, was scheduling two similar panels back-to-back. The What's Wrong with Resident Evil panel drew a packed audience, but we got to less than half for the following Zelda panel. Some of the people who left that I saw the next day simply said it was a combination of being so late (next point) and having too similar panels like that. So I guess maybe next year try to also consider spacing out certain types of panels so they're not so close, and not putting popular ones at the same time, either.

6) I'm not convinced panels beyond 12am will work out at Fanime. It really seems like Fanime is a large, spacious con, and people are running around all day and get really worn out by night. Most people want to go to bed or chill in a comfortable, laid-back environment like the video rooms by midnight.  While the RE panel, and our neighboring Hetalia panel, were pretty packed at 12am, people in the audience afterwards asked why we selected to be so late at night. The 1am slot was just too late, too, for the other panel we did. I think either next year, panels should cut off at midnight, or allow 18+ panels to be a bit earlier ahead of the 10pm time Fanime wanted all the adult panels to take place after. Otherwise, probably going to give serious consideration to dropping the 18+ part of the "What's Wrong with" panel series we do (which we plan to do again next year).

7) Make sure panel tech stuff is setup properly between panels. When setting up for the RE panel, many of the cables were missing (under the table, disconnected) and the VGA chord was also hidden under some cloth. First time I ever encountered this. Granted, this was after an entire day's worth of panels, but it added a few mins to our setup time, and I almost made the staff run to panel ops to get tech support (which would have probably delayed the panel) before we discovered the chords.

Still looking forward to next year, but this year has taught me that I need to be more specific with requests on time spots and write better titles/descriptions to appeal to con goers (not Fanime's problem).
Quote from: Xanreo on May 24, 2011, 07:37:04 PM
Quote from: MikeTSA on May 24, 2011, 11:51:21 AM
Catherine Sound Disc and Art Book (unopened, Japanese pre-order item)
Catherine Postcards (unopened, Japanese pre-order item)

Do you know where you're located yet so I can make a dash for these?

If the space # is the same as my # on the list, then I know where I'm located. If not, then no. If staff clarifies that, I can post where I'll be. Otherwise, don't want to give out wrong info.
Quote from: kookiekween99 on May 24, 2011, 06:01:20 PM
Quote from: MikeTSA on May 24, 2011, 11:51:21 AMNintendo DSi button set of five (North American DSi launch promotional item)
Super Mario Galaxy Commemorative Launch Coin (pre-order item)

Super interested in these two. :) Though I'm confused on what you mean by the first one. Are they buttons as in pins?

If you're selling on Thursday, I hope these items don't get bought. I can't show up til Friday.

Yea, it's a set of 5 pins (the thing says buttons, though). They're still in the original packing and all. I'm selling on Friday, so I guess you're in luck.
Got a lot of stuff. Sorry it's not categorized or anything, and no pics. Haven't finalized the pricing yet, but gonna make a lot of this stuff pretty cheap.

Square Enix Products Play Arts Kai Action Figure No.2 Alphonse Elric (boxed, never opened)
Catherine Sound Disc and Art Book (unopened, Japanese pre-order item)
Catherine Postcards (unopened, Japanese pre-order item)
End of Eternity Postcards (unopened, Tokyo Game Show 2009 promotional item)
Phoenix Wright Plush Keychain (small size, tags still in tact)
Toynami Naruto Sage Mode Action Figure San Diego Comic-Con 2010 Edition (unopened, 1 of 1000)
Nintendo DSi button set of five (North American DSi launch promotional item)
Okamiden folding hand fan (Tokyo Game Show 2009 promotional item)
Zelda: Spirit Tracks Furuta Figures (Various)
Sasuke Uchiha Head Band - Scratched out Konoha symbol version (Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 Promotional item)
Naruto Shippuden Konoha Symbol (orange) adjustable hat (Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 Promotional item)
Ninja Gaiden: Dragon Sword Limited Edition Stylus (Promotional item)
Mangacarta 2 Xbox360 Faceplate (Promotional Item)
Super Mario Galaxy Commemorative Launch Coin (pre-order item)
Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia Notebook autographed by Igarashi (promotional item)
Magnacarta 2 Official Visual Book (promotional item)
Level 5 Tokyo Game Show 2009 Lineup Booklet
Gold N64 Controller (used, controller only)
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker booklet (Tokyo Game Show promotional item)
Ninokuni carrying bag (Tokyo Game Show promotional item)
Twilight Princess cloth map
Level 5 Tokyo Game Show 2010 Lineup Booklet
Square Enix Tokyo Game Show 2010 Lineup Booklet
Etrian Odyssey Forests of Eternity Artbook (promotional item)
Tales of Vepseria Plastic Cards (dispensed from machines in Akihabara during Tales of Vesperia's PS3 release in Japan) - Yuri, Repede, Judith Card, Patty Fleur card
Twilight Princess The Portfolio of New Legend book (Nintendo Dream insert, 2005)
Castlevania Order of Ecclesia Small Poster autographed by Igarashi (promotional item)
Tokyo Game Show 2009 Official Program
Valkyria Chronicles 2 Mini-Guide Book (Tokyo Game Show 2010)
Square Enix Tokyo Game Show 2009 Product Lineup Booklet
Nostalgia (Nintendo DS) Art Documents Collection (promotional item)
Capcom Tokyo Game Show 2009 Visual Book
Catherine Mini-insert booklet
Square Enix E3 2009 Product Lineup
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots Black Booklet (promotional item)
Magnacarta 2 Battle Atlas
Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva Clear Folder (Tokyo Game Show 2009)
Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood Clear Folder (Tokyo Game Show 2009)
Muramasa: The Demon Blade Fold Out Poster (promotional item)
Bleach: The Third Phantom  Design Archives Cards
Final Fantasy XIII Limited Edition Soundtrack (Japan)
Final Fantasy XIII Xbox 360 Faceplates
Devil Summoner 2 Plushie
The Prince of Tennis Driving Smash Side Genius (Nintendo DS)
Mario Kart Wii (Japan import, game only/box/manual only)
Traveling with Yoshitomo Nara DVD
Demon's Souls
Speed Grapher Volume 5
Speed Grapher Volume 3
L Change the World
Adventures in Voice Acting Volume 1
Final Fantasy XI Ultimate Collection (Xbox 360)
Sega Superstars Tennis (Xbox 360)
Ideas and Suggestions / Re: Sharks playoff party
May 12, 2011, 09:15:17 PM
Seems I spoke too soon on two accounts. First, congrats to the Sharks. Second, not a single game will be in San Jose during Fanime (okay, maybe on Day 0). Should it go to Game 7, it would be in Vancouver on Saturday, May 28th. So that whole thing I posted about was m00t in the end. If there is a watching party, I'd like to stop by. As I said, not a Sharks fan, but I do enjoy watching the playoffs.
Ideas and Suggestions / Re: Sharks playoff party
May 12, 2011, 11:39:54 AM
Quote from: MPLe on May 11, 2011, 11:51:24 PM
Quote from: MikeTSA on May 10, 2011, 10:44:14 PM
Heh, the Sharks need to actually win first. They blew a 3-0 series lead and now its tied. Nothing against San Jose, but anything to avoid making the city more chaotic and crowded is better in my book, so I'm kinda hoping SJ loses. I already am stoked the Lakers lost so we in the gaming industry don't have to deal with the hell that is the Lakers playing at the Staples Center during E3, especially last year with Game 7 on the last day of the show (and all those riots after).
Hoping that a team loses so that you have a better experience is pretty selfish. Having a team in the playoffs (or equiv. in any sport) actually helps bring that city revenue. I'm not a Lakers fan and I definitely don't condone the rioting (other negative actions), but I would never wish that they lose for the reason that you specified.

Also, lol E3.

I'm not a Sharks fan, but I'm not a Red Wings fan, either. Sure, it's selfish, but why do I need to show support/loyalty to a team I don't like? If it's a choice between being a hypocrite or selfish, I take the latter so I can enjoy Fanime.

Though I didn't originally state this info, and was being selfish in my expressed satisfaction that the Lakes lost, thus making the busiest week of my work easier...I hate the Lakers, and I'm originally from Dallas, so it's not just that it made work hell, the team I care for won. So it ended up that the team I root for won, and as a result, working E3 in three weeks isn't going to be more of a nightmare.

"LoL E3" means exactly what? If that's suppose to be somewhat of a snide remark, you realize I not only work in the video game industry, but am holding an industry panel, right? It's not like I'm outright being rude about the Sharks. They're a good team that made the playoffs, I'm just not a fan so I don't inherently care if they win or lose.

I really don't mean to be that antagonistic against the Sharks (yea, if they win, it might be more crowded, which could suck, but it's good for the city and all as you've pointed out), but I think it's completely rational and fair to say anyone who has a 3-0 series lead and lets it slip away "blew it". Though the finality of that statement won't be rendered significant until the results of tonight's game.

On topic...if they do win, as a sports fan, that would be cool if Fanime did some cross over into non-traditional programming/events and had a watching party type activity.
Quote from: bsan89 on May 11, 2011, 12:54:06 AM
Quote from: angeljibrille on May 10, 2011, 11:42:59 AM
Quote from: bsan89 on May 09, 2011, 10:46:17 PM
I'm schedule on Thursday for SWAP MEET but my work is giving me doubt to being able to sell that day.

Anybody wanna switch up FRIDAY with me?

No switching is allowed; if your name isn't on the reg list or waiting list, you don't get in. Sorry.

I'm on Thursday reg list for swap meet.
I just wont be sure til 1 - week prior whether work will allow me off to sell my stuff >_<
I know Friday I can. So I can't swap with someone on Friday?

There is a workable way around this that, as far as I could tell, is within the rules. It says you can have an additional person selling with you, but the person who is one the list has to be the one to actually check in, pay, and enter the room with you.

Quote from: Fanime Swap Meet RulesYou may only register for one space per day (Thursday and Friday), and a maximum of two people may share a space (children under 12 years of age under parental supervision are allowed over the 2 person limit)

So I would guess if you don't mind checking in and escorting the person into the space, it would be plausible to allow them to sell in your place at your spot. That way you, the person actually on the list, took hold of the spot and paid for it and everything. Then on Friday, the two of you swap roles. They check you in and pay, then leave you there to sell. It's a matter of finding somebody willing to do all that. The only real problem is if somebody agrees to do this, and Thursday goes down smoothly, but on Friday things fall through and you're unable to get in for whatever reason (person bailed, was late, etc).