Freak Out Moments











{May 28, 2015}   MCM London May 2015

Hey!

So after lots of driving, running around and preparing the weekend was finally upon us. I can’t say I went all that excited at first, I think mainly because I wasn’t overly confident about myself. The thing with any form of anxiety, even those not suffering it as a disorder, is that you don’t always know it’s creeping up and then it can hit you. So I think it hit and then the morning I got into the car and packed it all went, why? Well because I am happy to see my friends again!

Travel – Getting from Nottingham over to London could not have been easier! The day before I had done the usual traffic checks and was in fact prepared for a lengthy wait but we sailed through. Myself and travelling companion (dressed as Constantine) arrived in good time. The travel back was not bad either, unless you count the M1 here. It’s entirely annoying  to be stuck on a Motorway, something designed for speed, to be doing 40-50 for the best part of 60 miles in length per time. It’s even worse when on the good open road trucks have some overtaking war and then end up slowing everyone down. I know they have long drives and it’s not an easy job but it can get you a bit grumpy after 2 plus hours and you want to be home. Fortunately my travel companion has accepted that Diggy Diggy Hole and the Trololol song are par for the course.

Hotel – My friend stayed with me at Custom House, Ibis and it was okay as always, it was nice to catch up with someone I don’t see as regularly as I would like too. The only problem you face near that area is the DLR works… I like a lay in but 4.30am start was the option! Oh well at least the following night I slept like the dead. I am quite jealous of the room mate who slept through the noise! It’s not too unreasonable for cost but the concern for most of us now is that the hiked up prices are putting people out of the market not the actual event.

Friday – I got my wristband and the hotel room wasn’t ready so I went for a wander to see who was around. It was lovely and not too busy so I had a look around, spotted some friends and then headed back to change. I wore my Anya Stroud outfit, I’ll be honest the Gears stuff really seems more about the gun! And who can argue with it, the lancer is pretty epic. I saw friends, and we had a nice wander. It wasn’t too hot and the event halls were laid out well to get inside. It was a lovely end to the day to meet up with friends, chat and get a drink.

Saturday – Usually I dread stepping into the main halls due to how busy it is but this time it was lovely. The changes and the fact it was sold tickets only seemed to make it so much better. I didn’t feel crushed due to a ton of people squeezing in. The entry system on both sides worked well as it seemed more free-flowing. There was a lot of popular stuff to go around and loads to see! It was lovely to have a variety and it shows how much the convention has expanded in interests, you have comics, films, anime and so much more.

Sunday – After a night at the Fox (the pub of choice) we got up and met for the next day. Costumes on and off we went, it was busy but not crowded and the weather up until the last hour or so was wonderful. I even brought a couple of bits as we had time to look around the stalls and then sat in on the Capcom panel as they revealed a look at the new re-mastered HD version for Devil May Cry 4. It was a nice end to the three days of convention and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The downsides – not that many but I will say the worst thing seems to be that the lack of courtesy from the public towards one another. It’s not like MCM are responsible for them but its infuriating when someone pushed into you especially when you have expensive props or even goods you have brought there. Some of the things people buy on stalls are going to be delicate and that guy/girl running after their friend like a marathon runner on the home stretch does not impress many people. In fact if I am honest it’s annoying… If I could ask one thing from people going, think of the people around you.

Cost – It’s getting silly for some things. I now bring my own water because most of the vendors (again not MCM’s fault) are charging £2 or more for a bottle of water. I can buy that for 57p or 6 for £1 in the supermarket. The problem then becomes is it worth you carrying it all day, yes! Food too, £10 for a Subway hastily shoved at you is not worth the money. At least there seems to be more options about that but I still end up packing extra into the car.

Overall the event for three days was so much fun! I don’t book photo-shoots as I am just not that bothered about it. I go for fun but I am always so happy when people stop me to say hello, the pictures are an added bonus but the main things I love to do are to take pictures of others and just generally see friends and make new ones.

So the overall haul of the weekend? Mostly World Of Warcraft based. Thanks to a lovely card stand I have two new vanity pets for my collection and I also have a glowing hearthstone key ring. I didn’t’ see anything to add to my Gears of War Collection, I suspect because I really have brought most of it. Good news being there’s a new re-master on the way and yours truly will be glad to spend the money I don’t have supporting my favourite game!

Hope that you all have a wonderful time on your travels!

That Gears Girl.

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{April 7, 2015}   YCC7 Review

Hey!

So it was the weekend for Yorkshire Cosplay Convention 7, due to the success from previous years Kitty and Jon expanded into the Magna Science Museum, accommodating a larger audience than the Dome. It must be truly frightening to manage these things even if you are experienced because you end up having to manage so many things that can be out of your control by a long country mile!

The convention set up had a much better space than the Dome, there were side rooms, activities galore and so many stalls! I think if you were prepared to wait for the initial rush to go you were in for a treat.

As you may know from following my blog I was given the honour of being voted in as Miss Yorkshire Cosplay Con 2015. Apparently people think my humble £5 Death Knight sewing is worth a vote! Pretty awesome, it shows you we can all have a go at these things and I hope you do! The cosplay competition was a fun watch too, there were two parades for the adults with made and brought costumes and there was also one for the children (one of the judges being the lovely Sketch McDraw).

One of the problems that became apparent within minutes of opening was that the ticket system, the organisers paid for the box office and this would mean they should be arranging the original entry and filter through for everyone but this was not the case. The doors opened and it was chaotic, it was certainly not the fault of the people behind the desk or those inside the halls. I know people are angry about the messy entry system and it’s being addressed ready for August.

The second thing that came up was the lighting in the main hall, the hall had several lights out, which I am reliably informed were supposed to have been repaired before the thing opened. The organisers had no control over this but it caused traders problems as it meant their stalls were not presented it the ‘best light’… however to be fair, I still had a good luck and the light was not going to put me off buying something if I really liked it, but it’s a shame that the venue didn’t sort it as promised.

In regards to the rest of it, lovely day! For the most part everyone was kind and friendly. My lovely Retro Lancer was more in demand than I was, this is nothing new, it’s an awesome gun after all! I saw some regular faces and friends, and made more friends as well. It’s always lovely to see the amount of effort that goes into costumes from the starting cosplayers to the more professional.

We watched the cosplay entrants; I am simply not brave enough or confident enough in my skills to do something like that. I commend anyone that has a go! And then we watched the performances, listening to some songs I hadn’t heard before and soaking in the atmosphere. Theslowsniper was funny too, he jumped on stage for a little silly dance, Jack is a youtube gamer and a really nice guy, I have succumbed and subscribed… see these events do work!

I hope that if you had a good day like me you’re coming back for August and maybe I’ll get to say hi, and if you didn’t have the best of times please keep an eye on the events and pages because you will see how the feedback is used to improve things.

And that’s all from me for now.

Adios Cowboys…

That Gears Girl.

Image courtesy of : https://www.facebook.com/gonzography?fref=ts go take a look amazing!!!



{December 29, 2014}   Happy New Year

Time for an end of year round up?

As I write this I’m thinking about a lot of good things that have happened and I am however drawn inevitably to some of those lower moments too. A hit and run on my car, thanks mate I needed the insurance claim! and bad mental health that has put my plans for dieting back so I need to get back to that. But on to the good!

* Another year with my wonderful partner.

* Cosplay, meeting new and old friends thanks to the hobby.

* Mental health is back on track… for now 😉

* Changed job and moved house.

Cosplay wise I got to meet so many people and share a passion with them, it’s just been fantastic. I have even been nominated for Miss Yorkshire Cosplay, if you get time do click on the link HERE and vote for me. I would really appreciate it, and to be honest I am utterly flattered people have voted at all. It’s so much fun to be part of something like that, I never dreamed it would happen to me anyway.

Gaming wise – more Gears of War, a tantalising news event of the possibility that there will be more for X Box one from the Gears world; this means my year of co-operative gaming and hilarious deaths in multi-player were worth it!  Well to be honest any time with friends is worth it.

I got to revel in the new Wolfenstein, also to play new games from Gold that I might not have before. One of those which still amuses me now is Battle Block Theatre, the chaos platform gaming just seems so much fun. I also like my Steam account as it means that I can go wild playing on that too.

World of Warcraft and running a guild is also a blessing, sometimes it feels a little curse like when I am having a rough day and cannot get everything properly organised but the guild I run has amazingly tolerant and mature players for the most part. I like it when I can get time with them as a group for raiding etc… now I really should sort that poor guild bank out!

I really do wish everyone a great 2015, and I hope that you get the most out of a new year.

That Gears Gal

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So Nottingham is the kind of city that has good points and bad, like any city in the world and this weekend a good thing happened. A convention that was backed by lots of great names, people and business that we wouldn’t otherwise see. It however did have some down-sides which I am going to try and cover without bias.

So I am going to cover the downs before I do the goods, it seems that the venue picked wasn’t big enough, however to be honest it’s one of those catch 22’s isn’t it? You want to do something without risking a terrible loss of money. It’s a business as much as a passion for many people. Money is the be-all end-all of these scenario’s and let’s also remember these people are still going to have to pay bills as much as anyone else there. That said if the venue’s going over it’s capacity on tickets alone perhaps it’s time to show a little restraint there, oversell them a little for the ones not likely to show up but seriously think about what to do there.

It was a venue for around 800 folks and already there are thousands estimated on the list. A shame because bad names and rep’s are not what you want first time out. So for those that had a bad experience I truly hope you will see what they plan for next year before deciding “Never again!”. But again I can understand why people will make that decision, even with a refund at the door if you have travelled for a significant period, booked hotels and hyped up for a great day out, you really are going to walk way disappointed, and angry. The only thing I’d say is it’s not the crew’s fault and people complain so liberally about the volunteers and people that do come to help that I think that aspect is very unfair… they were doing their best to help everyone, it is a shame it didn’t go to plan. I hope that people will make the proper complaints to the proper channels and receive a worthy response back, but don’t attack the people who couldn’t affect that please?

All that aside, there was a lot to do in a very small space. The weather was nice and so you could enjoy the outside as much as in, we saw some great friends outside and chatted to some new ones too. It was lovely to be able to see a variety of costumes across the various genre’s and the guests were all very engaging.

We queued at 10am, myself and a friend of mine dressed as Arnold Rimmer and both of us were unfortunately a little under the weather but none-the-less determined to see what it held. The first apology came when the crew told us that some guests had been delayed and it had put back the set up. No matter, Stormtroopers, Ghostbusters and the Stig were all happy to entertain us without delay.

The venue really was small which meant it took a lot to get around the stalls, and once the talks and bits were over we were interested in we headed outside. Actually outside was just lovely, the sun and the cosplayers outside were fantastic, we got some great pictures of people there doing what they do best… dressing up, conversing and supporting the community. As a cosplayer it was certainly outside that I enjoyed more than in.

This is starting to become a bit more indicative of most conventions though, I find if the weather is good you really do want to go outside, snap pics and not be pushed around by crowds. Oh listen to me what an anti-social moo!  Here are a few pictures from the day. I’ll load more to my Deviant Art or facebook *via Cosplay Without Bias* and if you were there, good or bad experience, I hope that if you met me (dressed as Dante) it was a pleasurable experience. I know I enjoyed meeting everyone there that I did. (I also think the Joker in the below picture requires a medal as he was one of those folk that travelled for miles but still kept a positive outlook!)

Birmingham MCM next week, lets hope I can give more positive feedback than I have here, but overall I hope next year will be a bigger and better event.

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{December 28, 2013}   2013 What’s happened to me?

Wow what a year! And I really do thank my family and friends for it all.

1. Partner.

He’s suffered my obsessive cosplay outings, holiday and trips all over the place. We’ve both been very busy this year, he even ventured out to a convention with me despite hating them. He’s a rock when I am depressed, and I in turn hope I do that for him when he is low or wants comfort. We’ve been together for over a decade now, seems pretty impressive to me.

2. I changed jobs.

I went from a full time position dealing with complaints for the energy industry and it was a bit of a harrowing time. The place I was in took up a lot of my energy and I found it hard to deal with by the end, more so when I realised how many people I would leave behind. I have now got a new job, it’s part time and the money adjustments will really set in during 2014.

3. Venice.

This was amazing. I went with what I consider to be one of my best set of friends here in Nottingham. It’s a shame more friends couldn’t be mustered up but it’s really a place you can fall in love with. I am desperately hoping to return there, as much as I would like to go back to the USA and even Germany too. It was so hot and I even got a tan!

4. Other outings?

I was lucky to get to see the Mansion for Zed Events, I met a lot of amazing people there from both Zed Events and REUK (Resident Evil UK). It was so much fun! It was a great road trip with my friends and it was another great way of proving I can get past the years of sitting home, in semi-forced reclusion.

Sheffield and Birmingham Cemetery trips – again I went with friends or met friends there. I love to look around and see the beautiful gravestones, the plants and environment; I don’t mind if people consider it morbid. It makes me happy and I feel at peace in them.

I also took a couple of other trips, one to Haverhill to see friends I don’t get to see enough and also a random trip out to go and buy a Gears of War Lancer off a friend there. I fell lucky enough to catch up with another friend in Scarborough and so both trips were a great deal of fun.

5. Cosplay.

WOW where do I begin? How about the list of the ones I ventu

I have really enjoyed making so many friends, and I have absolutely learnt a lot about costumes. I have seen the good and bad side of the hobby. I love the costumes, the friends and I love looking around. I hate the blatant elitism and the downright rude way people can be, not everyone there wants to be an air-brushed model on a page, and I am definitely happy with just staying in the circles I do. If you want to say hi or get a picture do so, but I don’t approach photographers because I don’t need them to make me feel good. Especially when this year I lost seven stone, made friends by the bucket-loads and didn’t even need an agent to do it! (Yeah that was a cheap dig at the “I want to make friends, book my pictures” type of people). red too? So MCM Telford, both Birmingham events, both London events, LFCC in the summer, Insomnia47 (thanks to the awesome Tigerlily Cosplay and her competition), J-Con and Nerdfest. What a year?

6. Gaming.

Oh lords well – it’s really been the year for Gears of War and Resident Evil, mixed with a bit of Devil May Cry (original 4). I did also get my mitts on Metal Gear Rising. It’s been a great year for social gaming, I’ve spent plenty of hours on my Xbox and PC, and I also got a fair amount of time on the MMO I have played for quite a few years (yes the dreaded WOW player is here).

Gaming has been a good outlet for me, when I am not able to write, draw or muster up the energy to fight low points of depression it’s a way to escape the troubles. When I am in a good mood it’s a great way to clock up some kill counts too!

So how has your year been? I hope it’s been good and that come 2014 it will only get better.

Special thanks to Jon Fisher Photography for my Dante picture.

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1398370_654559424574369_1827787673_o (2)My Gears Collection



{November 3, 2013}   MCM Review Oct 2013

So it’s been a bit manic but finally I have time to get some writing about the event up and running, other than the previous comedy post about the situation with the weird man on the Sunday.

So here goes –

Friday: we had a few blips to get there, we were stuck in a two hour tail-back around the Birmingham area, I really needed to pee! But it’s okay once we got on the road it was a fun trip down and despite the cheesy music in the car my friend fared well and came in alive haha!

Getting our wristbands for the weekend on early entry wasn’t at all painful compared to the May queue. It was simple in and out, bands on *which by the way are a better quality so thanks MCM!* and then into the event.

Friday’s is for me the better day to try and shop, Saturday I barely ever go into the complex and hall. It is just toooo busy! So we had a wander and I brought some rather sexy Gears of War additions for my collection.

Saturday – Oh lords just TOO busy to be inside. And it’s not even just the staff that can be rude, most of them were okay this time. I’ve had the door staff and people being quite rude before but for the most part I escaped that. I will however say some members of the public should probably be glad there are not real weapons they are that damned rude! Pushing people, moaning about the fact there’s too many folks. It’s a convention expect people to be there, but if you can’t be polite or at least move out of the damned flow to have a twenty minute food break I’d rather you let your oxygen go to another person with a brain…

I went to the Fox the Saturday night, a little bold for me as I am terrible at these social things. Cosplay is the way I have picked to battle this social issue, so I went and I had a lovely time. I came back, passed out for about three hours and then woke up with an anxiety attack, however could have been worse because I at least got a little sleep. Did also have a lot of bacon for breakfast – mmmm bacon!

Sunday was a lot calmer indoors, it meant we got a little chance to do some last minute shopping. My friend James had found me a Robbie Rabbit from Silent Hill, I never did find the Konami Store! I was dressed in BSAA outfit, whilst I wasn’t stopped as much as others I really did have a wonderful time in that costume. REUK are just wonderful as a group, I feel like part of a family there.

So the organisation? I would say considering the volume not bad. Again I would say some of the staff/volunteers sincerely need to work on their damned attitude. It’s a nerdfest/geekfest of people that probably aren’t all as brave as they think and sometimes we need a little human touch even if we don’t look one. However when it came to a problem on the Sunday the security on site were on hand and dealt with the issue quickly.

Props/Con Goers treatment – whilst I had no problems myself I was really angry to hear that sensible con-goers with props were turned away whilst others in there I could see were more dangerous with their behaviour than any guy with a fake gun could ever have been! It’s not the Props it’s the bloody people that need chucking out. I would say there should be a check point where you can get your weaponry/props checked out by ONE central point. If the weapon is deemed safe and the cosplayer sensible then give that prop a tag to tie on or something that makes it clear it’s been deemed con-safe. It takes the personal issues away from the door security and means less trouble for those of us that can go in and out ten times a day, then suddenly stopped by the one guy/gal that suddenly takes a dislike. It’s far too based on someone’s personal opinion which means too much error with bias.

Stalls/stands – FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WHAT COMICS! Seriously it’s called Comiccon and there was like one, maybe two stalls of comics? Very disappointed that the gaming side is lacking, the comics were hit and miss on about two stalls. If I wanted to buy a lucky cat or a bazillion takes on Japanese sweets that we already could buy on the ENTIRE area of Japan food then wow great day. Didn’t see a damned thing outside of the Gears tucked away in some boxes and the Robbie that someone else found for me. I wasn’t impressed with the range this time, a shame as people go with all that money to spend on an event and can end up coming back with very little.

The Steam Punk stands seemed non-existent and even if you are not a major fan it’s part of the conventions generally. The Table Tennis area was a terrible idea, whilst standing by my friends waiting for his cosplay judging we were constantly bombarded by the damned things and watching some kid destroy a table and having to keep repairing it. Not a good idea MCM really, really not!

So overall? Negatives =Biggest lets downs? Not a single guest of interest for me as a gamer, I don’t give a shit about Young Dracula and I don’t care for half of the crap put on inside. Sadly it was just not exciting for the line up and I was sad to hear so many negative bits about it.  Gaming was not really that varied, a shame but the ones on there looked popular enough for the mainstream.

Highlights – I did chat to a developer for a bit who was making his own xbox game and that was pretty cool. Costumes – plenty of good ones and I got to see a lot of my friends finished products from their blogs and facebook make it into real life. New friends I made along the way, absolutely the highlight! A couple of people stopping me for my pictures, I’m not bothered by popularity but it’s a massive compliment when someone does stop me.

Go again? Yes I will be, I will be going to May to see if some of the points addressed by people are picked up on and resolved.  I don’t want people to think I don’t ever have a good time there, I really do or I wouldn’t go back but I’d hope for more variety on the menu by May. Please MCM PLEASE go back to the pre-mainstream crap, I’m a geek and I don’t want it to feel like a trip into the city centre over a weekend of celebrating that fact.

And LOVE to everyone I met there!

So some shoutouts and links for anyone that got to the bottom of this haha!

AJL Armours and Cosplay

Big Red Ape Cosplay

Capcom UK

Buster Boy Cosplay

Cosmic Workshop

Cosplay Without Bias

Cosplayuk

Jon Fisher Photography

Zed Events 

 



et cetera