(griffin's 2013 BotCon adventure)


Had to wake up early today, as the Dealer Room opens early, and that would be the only time I would have today to take photos of the art display, and some parts of the Hasbro exhibit that I missed the day before.
Because once the panels started at 10am, I was going to be in there until the end of the day.
I got up at about 7am again, posted up some more photos (I was too tired the night before to get them all done) and headed down to the Dealer Room, just after it had already opened.

On the way down there though, I saw this huge fleet of scooters... like there was a convention on at the same time as ours.

10-11 - PANEL - TFPrime Voice Actors (Sobolov, Horan)
11-12 - PANEL - Hasbro products
12-1 - PANEL - IDW Comics
1-2 - PANEL - Gen1 Retrospective (Burr, Jensen)
2-3 - PANEL - Rescue Bots CAST
3-4 - PANEL - Collector Club
4-5 - PANEL - TF Movies (Morshower)
(10-11.30 - Autographs - Jansen, Burr)
(12-1.30 - Autographs - Horan, Sobolov)
(1.30-3 - Autographs - Morshower)
(3-5 - Autographs - Rescue Bots Cast & Crew)
6.30pm - Cocktail Reception (Altas Foyer)
7.00pm - Casino Night Dinner (San Diego Room)
8.00pm - Bingo (Tiki Pavilion)
10.15pm - Auction (San Diego Room)

The one annoying thing that happened today... in the middle of the first panel, my camera's battery indicator started flashing.  I had taken quite a few photos in the dealer room that morning, with the flash on for all the Art photos.  I didn't recharged it last night because half charging shortens the life of the battery in the long run... and I thought my second battery was still charged.  Unfortunately, by this stage, the second 'cheap' battery (it was a freebee with the camera) was now only holding enough charge to take about 10 photos.  It didn't even have enough power to try to take a video recording of Sobolov and Horan doing their voices... which I wanted.

I was starting to panic.  What if the main battery died and I couldn't take any photos of the IDW panel, or the Collector Club one?  The others weren't as important, as they were just people on the stage, and I could easily grab someone else's single photo from the net (with credit of course).  I just didn't feel comfortable doing it for dozens of photos, which those two panels would have.
Fortunately the IDW panel was light on the slides this year, so I managed to ration out the battery power and made it through to the end.
I then had to work out what to do next.  Can I skip a panel and go back to my room to recharge the battery... or just stay and at least sit through the panels and just improvise something later (which would be more work).
If the Glen Morshower panel was early, I could have skipped that one, as he had one on the next day.  But I decided to leave the Gen1 panel after about half an hour... as it was assessed as being the least news-worthy.  As long as they told their stories early, they didn't really have any character voices to witness, or significant stories to tell while working on Transformers (Wally Burr would, but I've sat through his panel at a previous BotCon, so wasn;t likely to hear too much new).
At about 1.30, I tried to sneak out of the Panel Room (which isn't easy when you are in the front row, and as big as me)... went up to my room and plugged in the main battery for about 20 minutes.  Hopefully that gives it enough charge to cover the rest of the day, and doesn't end up destroying the battery too much.
Back down to the Panel Room as it turned 2pm, I sat up the front again, just as they started announcing the Rescue Bots cast.
And yes, the battery lasted until the end of the day's panels.

Halfway through the last panel, I quickly ducked into the Dealer room before it was closed... I needed to take photos of the new toys in the Hasbro exhibit (after they had their presentation).

At the Hasbro exhibit, Dispensor was there telling the Hasbro people what to do... well, he is a Decepticon after all.  Just not an intimidating one, so they just ignored him.

My huge Saturday haul.  I saw these at a Dealer table, while at the Hasbro exhibit, so decided to grab them, despite being very expensive by American standards.
I was actually running out of American toys that I needed (I imported as many as I could a couple months ago, so that I didn't have to spend as much time looking for toys).
These ones were a bit of a surprise for me though, as they hadn't been out long, and one of the dealers had airmailed them in time for the convention.  As such, they ended up being close to Australian pricing, AFTER we haggled the price (NOTE - always haggle in the dealer room... If they state a price or have one on a tag, offer $10 or $20 less, depending on the size of the purchase.  I've rarely been knocked back when haggling, which saves hundreds each year).

And out of packaging.  The Wreckers were really surprising, in that they had new heads AND extra weapons that had moving parts. It's no wonder Hasbro wanted these out, even after they'd already moved on from the Fall of Cybertron line.
And I like the Sharkticon Megatron.  Most people don't, but for me, it FINALLY it gives a reason for that stupid front of that jet mode (by making it look like a decorative mouth, similar to some jet fighters having a mouth painted on the nose).  It is also the only Megatron toy for the entire Beast Hunters line... which is weird, since the character was in the current season MORE than in the first season (which had 3 Megatron toys).

I headed straight back to my room to recharge the camera battery, and headed over to the foodcourt for some pretzels.  I knew that there was going to be some food at the Casino night in a couple hours, but in previous years it has sometimes just been finger-food, and I didn't want to be left hungry.... so ended up buying a few pizza items while I was there. (I have have no will power to stop myself)

While I was at the foodcourt I saw a mobile phone vendor... which suddenly reminded me that I had to get an iphone giftcard for someone back home (to gain access to the American app store). I had totally forgotten, because it wasn't toy related.  He said to go to a 7-11 for one, and now that I was in a hotel that was away from anything convenient, I was a bit worried now that I might have missed the chance.
I asked at the mobile phone vendor if they sold gift cards, just thinking that it was possible... to sell one with the other.  The guy looked at me a bit funny and said, "try the Apple store over there", pointing off to a store some 50 metres away near the food court.
That's not even the embarrasing bit....
A lightbulb just went off in my head, realising that (duh) Apple stores would sell iphone gift cards... and guess what store I was at in Florida?
Yes, an Apple store was right there, when I was looking for a box to pack my luggage in, and I didn't even think about the giftcard (because I don't use them or have ever bought them).

I went over to the Apple store and asked what there hours were over the next two days, because I wanted to go back to the hotel to check what sort of giftcard he was wanting (I didn't want to get the wrong one and waste money)... and then come back either tomorrow after the convention ended, or Monday morning before I left.

I was now relieved. It was something I promised, and now didn't have to stress over it.

Back in the room I stuffed myself with pizza and pretzels, and got dressed for the Casino night.

When I saw that it was a more formal dinner, I felt a bit under-dressed with my Singapore Transformers Ride t-shirt on (to see if anyone would notice and ask about what it was like), but then, quite a few others were in just t-shirts.

I got back to my room at about 11pm, and went to sleep around 12.30.

Go to next day - Sunday June 30th

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***All pictures in this convention report are mine unless noted or watermarked. Any that are borrowed, have the source credited/noted.  If you want to use/borrow any of my photos, all I ask is for you to please credit the source as well. I try to take as many of my own photos as possible, and usually only resort to using others if I failed to get something, or my photo wasn't clear enough.

OZFORMERS - The Australian (and Asia) Transformers Fansite for News and Interaction (started way back in 1996 - try to find a Transfan community that's older)
BotCon website - The official Collector Club and Convention website
To contact me --> griffin @ otca.com.au