So, I'm contemplating going to Dragon Con this year, but I'm not sure if it's my bag.
Can anyone explain to me the vibe of this con as compared to Gen Con? Or compared to Origins? Do you like it? What's the main draw?
I'd appreciate any advice.
DragonCon is like a weekend-long pop-nerd-culture party with an atmosphere of fantasy that permeates the entire event.
Cosplay is huge, and there are dozens of celebrity and media guests.
GenCon shares the same culture, but it's more focused on gaming, with hundreds of game companies to visit and thousands of game events to play.
So, besides meeting celebrities and watching the cosplay what is there to do there?
I have been trying to finally attend so I can throw in a first-hand perspective, but I believe the answer is "party and buy stuff" (not bad things, mind you). I think every time someone came onto these Forums and posted something like "hey, where is the list of party rooms?" and was met with great confusion, it was because they were a usual DragonCon attendee and did not realize other conventions might not have a, like, formal intense party culture.
Thanks, quarex. That jives with everything I've heard about Dragon Con.
I think I'm leaning towards not going... it's pretty pricey for not being sure if I'll like it. Plus, I don't really do the whole "celebrity meet and greet" thing.
If anyone else has any thoughts, I'd love to hear them though!
Its been years since I went. They have panels, seminars, shows, concerts, autograph signings etc. They sort of want to be comicon. They have some space for gaming, but when I went, if you weren't into magic, the gaming space was pretty weak sauce. It was fun, but it was a geek culture convention with it's emphasis on TV and movies, it was not a gaming convention.
On the up side the party scene was pretty good. On the down side, local businesses tended to treat the convention as a bunch of unpleasant wierdos, more or less obviously. On the very down side, I would never in a million years take my teenage daughter to it due to the creep factor. One of the founders had legal troubles due to multiple complaints by underage boys. He remained connected with the event for a long time, because the legal structure of the organization didn't give them a way to kick him out. Also on the down side, dragon con competed fiercely with all other local conventions, and as the 800 pound gorilla, tended to win. The rumor was that they would schedule last minute mandatory department meetings at the same time as any other local convention, pulling the best volunteers away from the start up convention when they were needed most. Can't say for sure, but when I lived in atlanta, no local convention other than dragon con made it to a second year.
I am told that dragon con makes our hotel situation look downright pleasant, by people who have attended recently.
I last went to Dragoncon in 1998 and even back then the hotel situation was abysmal. (And the elevator situation at the Hyatt was ridiculous!).