I'd also say, for fairness, anyone who doesn't get a ticket in their first pick gets priority for the second wishlist pick, and so on; the longer your wishlist goes without a ticket the further towards the front of the line you are.
If this thread is going to be productive, stay on topic: how & when wish lists should be submitted - specifically whether attendees need manually click a button to make it happen.
Any discussion of round robin or other methods of processing wish lists once they are in the queue should be sent to another thread.
This is the third time. If y'all care that much about both topics, discuss them separately and directly.
Gen Con LLC
I would love an auto-submit option. I got a timeout on my first click yesterday, and after a reload and re-click ended up #5955. It took about an hour and a half to process. I got a ticket to *one* of the 27 RPG's on my wish list.
One nuance I would add: To cover cases like linkn's TD purchase (he wanted any run on Thursday evening, so he put every Thursday evening run on his wishlist) you could add an option "skip this event if I already have tickets for another event with the same title". It would be a bit more complex to implement than the "skip if there aren't tickets for everybody" option that's available now, since you'd have to query the shopping cart, but it would probably be worthwhile. It might slow down how quickly really popular events sell out, particularly TD, since I suspect a lot of people use linkn's shotgun approach, and delete them from their cart later.
I too had to take a day off work to hitthe botton to then get timed out and end up 6500 in line.
I will go with my son as we will have a blast. But yes there has to be a way t make it auto process. Its simply so frustrating that in the technological time there isn't some relatively easy way to make this happen.
Give people the option, if you choose to have it auto submitted you must pre set up your payment method and pay for events that are processed. OR you can submit yourself at noon and have the chance to go through your cart and remove unwanted or duplicate events before paying.
Back to the main topic...
I still think the best way to run the event launch, if GenCon decides to stick with purchasing events "live" like this instead of an automated purchase system (personally, I agree with live event sales), is to allow people to sign up for a queue lottery the day of events going on sale.
The process could work something like this:
Before events go on sale, everything works like it does now. The day they go on sale, when the big timer hits a certain time (perhaps half an hour remaining), the "submit wishlist for processing" button lights up. When the timer hits 0 (at noon EST, if GenCon keeps to the same schedule), everyone who hit the button before the timer ran out has their position shuffled, and their wishlists process in a random order.
At this point, the system can either do wishlists like it does now, or do some kind of zig-zag system where it'll give everyone one ticket from their wishlist before giving anyone a second ticket, and so on. Personally, I think that doing a system that tries to give everyone a ticket high on their wishlist would be better than a system where those who get the best pick in the lottery basically get everything in their list, but I know that would also be harder to code. While this is going on, anyone who got into the system after the timer's up (i.e. after noon EST) would have their wishlist added to the back of the queue, ready to process with the normal system once all the early-comers are finished.
The main benefit to this system, at least in my opinion, is that it doesn't rely on people (or GenCon servers) having stable connections to work fluidly. Limiting the pre-event timer to half an hour also means that only people who are actually available at their computer to purchase the tickets are considered (assuming GenCon wants to stick with a "live purchase" system). As an added benefit, GenCon can still add a system that ends up being fair for more people, by attempting to give everyone something from their wishlist instead of the first few people getting everything they want and the last few people getting only what's left by that point (although the "first" and "last" person are randomized, in this case, not just the first one to hit the button).
no matter what system is used there are going to be people that miss out on what they want. it is impossible for everyone to be able to attend every event they want.
Personally i think the current system works fine, my only suggestion would be on the page that shows up after your wishlist has been processed would be to make the go to checkout link more apperent instead of jsut a link above the BIG GREEN BUTON that says submit wishlist. Most people automatically assume that is the continnue buton and end up subbmiting a emptly wishlsit again and have to wait longer.
The someone is always going to be disappointed reasoning is not a valid reason to stay with a system many would prefer more user friendly. No matter the system I won't get all I want. I know that, but most would get SOME of what they want with a automated system that did each persons number 1 choice, then each persons #2 choice so on and so on. Even if it is random each time it starts over. Your likely to get some of the events you want unless you have a VERY small pool of events in your wish list.
If they aren't going to buy anything, then their tickets are automatically returned to the pool. The amount of time tickets stay in someone's cart could be shortened if needed. Say, 30 minutes, with the option to restart the timer if you're actively on the site and still considering things?