Thursday, August 2, 2012

Recent Updates: SDCC, Doctor Who, And Being In The NY Times

I have been on a bit of a blogging "depression" in the past few weeks -- there has been a great deal going on that I could blog about, yet I have not blogged anything at all. First and foremost, San Diego Comic-Con was a few weeks ago and it was an incredible experience for me. I was going to write a series of blog posts about my experiences during the four-day convention, but I have decided against that. Being that SDCC was weeks ago and most of the hype has died down, I decided that it was best to briefly discuss a few of my fun adventures. I have wanted to go to SDCC for many years now (last year I blogged about my troubles  involving getting tickets to SDCC 2011). The Frag Dolls provided me with the amazing opportunity to work with them at the convention this year. I had the pleasure to work at the Microsoft Lounge at the Hard Rock Hotel demoing Assassin's Creed III multiplayer with the Ubisoft developers. I met a great deal of new faces and I also reunited with some old friends.


My blog on the Frag Dolls' Website about Comic-Con 2012

Before I go any further, if you are interested in seeing some of the biggest attractions from Comic-Con this year, check out my blog on the Frag Dolls' website. I covered all of the major comic book, movie, TV show and video game news from SDCC this year. I also discussed what all of the Frag Dolls were up to at the convention.



Most exciting moment at Comic-Con 2012: The Doctor Who panel

One highlight of the convention for me personally was getting into the Doctor Who Nerd HQ Panel, which was a completely random event. On Saturday evening at the convention, my lovely Frag Doll friends and I decided to check out the Nerd HQ Lounge, an off-site event that was only a few blocks from the convention center. It was there where I saw a line of people in Doctor Who attire outside of the convention, and I knew exactly what they were in line for. There were several Doctor Who panels taking place throughout the course of the weekend, but I knew this particular event was completely sold out because I had tried to get a ticket earlier in the day. As I walked past the line with my friends, I was feeling a little discouraged because I knew there was no way for me to get into that panel. About 15 minutes later, one of my friends had to use the bathroom, and an employee directed us toward the back room. 

At this point, the line was completely gone and all of the Whovians were in their seats waiting for the panel to begin. As we were walking toward the empty line that had been full when we first arrived, a security guard asked, "are you ladies here for the Doctor Who panel?" At that moment, I immediately blurted out "YES! We are!" From there, the security guard let us into the back room where the panel was about to take place. The room was packed and all of the seats were taken, but we were able to watch from the standing area behind the seats.

As we entered, the announcer said three names that made my heart skip a few beats -- Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, and Arthur Darvill. My heart began to race, my body was shaking, and I was beyond excited. I was actually standing in a sold-out panel with the three biggest stars of Doctor Who.


At this point, I was screaming, cheering, and jumping up and down. My friends were not interested in Doctor Who, but they could clearly see how excited I was and decided to stay so I could enjoy the panel. I thank them for that so much. When the three stars entered the room, the crowd exploded with excitement and you could hear pictures snapping every few seconds. I whipped out my camera, and tried to catch a few good shots myself.


I will admit that Matt Smith is one of my biggest celebrity crushes, so being able to see him in person was a dream come true. He was so animated and expressive, just like he is as The Doctor. Karen was absolutely stunning in person, and the only thing I could notice about Arthur was his interesting choice in fashion (he was wearing an oversized, patterned sweater if it is not clear enough in the pictures).

The panel itself had its share of funny and emotional moments. For example, Smith was wearing a hat and he noted that his hat was "cool". Also, one little girl asked during the Q&A if Smith was afraid of the Weeping Angels, saying that she was also afraid of them. Smith told her not to worry, and that he was going to fight all of the Weeping Angels off. I am pretty sure after he said that, every girl's heart melted in the audience.

Taken from "Doctor Who and the Tardis by Craig Hurle"

The Doctor Who Nerd HQ panel was the biggest excitement for me at the convention. I had a few bad moments at SDCC this year, but the fun times I had outweighed the negative by so much that San Diego Comic-Con has become one of the best weekends of my life. From playing awesome games before they are  released at the Ubisoft Party, working with awesome people at the Microsoft Lounge, checking out the convention floor where I got to say 'hi' to John Barrowman, and hanging out with the Frag Dolls, I would say that Comic-Con was a huge success.


My face on Xbox Live

I feel like every gamer's dream is to get a spotlight on the Xbox Live dashboard. Being able to see your face, your gamertag, or even your avatar out there for everyone to catch a glimpse of can be an exciting feeling. I was able to experience that excitement when I saw my face for a brief moment on a video on Xbox Live. On the video "Comic-Con Round-Up #1", my friend Tiffany and I were spotted gaming in the Microsoft Lounge at the beginning of the video. It was pretty cool to see myself on there, and I feel that as a gamer I can say it was an "achievement unlocked".


Collection of swag and other awesome purchases

Comic-Con would not be a convention without free swag and money well-spent on awesome stuff. In the past few weeks I have collected so many cool findings pictured below. Some things were what I collected at the convention,  others were comics and magazines I recently purchased from visiting local comic shops, and some were gifts from my boyfriend (he rocks). Here is a quick compilation of everything I want to show off.

From L to R: SDCC exclusive Doctor Who t-shirt, Doctor Who socks,  Eleventh Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver.


Getting a picture in The New York Times

Finally, I want to address a New York Times article released yesterday that had my picture in it. A photographer took some shots of the Frag Dolls and Ubisoft developers playing Assassin's Creed III during Comic-Con and they used it for an article about sexual harassment in gaming. 

My picture from an article in The New York Times.

Clearly this is an issue that is big enough where not only gaming websites are recognizing it, but now one of the biggest journalism outlets is addressing it. While I agree that all harassment in gaming is bad, this article specifically addresses sexual harassment. I do not think this issue is something that should be undermined and dismissed. There are plenty of male gamers out there who respect and treat females just as they would males, and that is a great thing. But the truth of the matter is, for every one male gamer who does not single out a female gamer there are ten more of them who do single out females (usually in a negative manner) whether we want to be or not. As much as we as gamers want this to change, I feel that this will never change with the way our society runs. Many people do not realize how serious this issue really is, and I believe this article addresses it very well. I am very honored to have my picture in this article, and as an aspiring journalist, I am glad that the author did her research and addressed this issue in a clear, concise manner.


I am ecstatic to be sharing all of these past achievements on my blog. The things I am sharing here are what I dreamed about happening to me in years past. As a gamer, I believe that with a lot of hard work and dedication, it is absolutely possible to achieve your goals. I encourage anyone reading this to continue to strive for what you want to achieve in your lifetime. One day, those things you dreamed about really could happen.