Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A Fantastic Tale, Full of Adventure

This is one of the most sought-after events of the year, hosted by a highly regarded company in its industry. Her products have tested the limits of popularity and leave their customer base with an ever growing desire for more. To what am I referring? Blizzard’s annual celebration conference: BlizzCon 2009, August 21-22 in Anaheim, CA.

A number of us were lucky enough to make it to last year’s BlizzCon and we all decided to repeat our geeky experience. There was only one problem: 20,000 tickets, but tens of thousands (maybe more) who wanted them. Pulling some stereotypical “Casey-isms,” I did my research. Why? … I had to know what I was up against and how to best accomplish the rigorous task of purchasing tickets. Last year the tickets sold out in about 12 minutes! I was determined to again be one of those people.

Since Blizzard only sells BlizzCon tickets at their online store, you can imagine what might happen when thousands upon thousands upon thousands try to visit a website at once. Last year the website continuously crashed upwards of two days =). Twas quite the mess.

This year, they upgraded their system and set up a queue once you login to their website. It worked much better. I tested the queue days before the release of the first batch of tickets which would be on March 16th with my preferred browser, Google Chrome. Both Chrome and Firefox were giving me a hassle so I decided to use IE *sigh* - but it worked! I also set the homepage to the Blizzard Store, and had links on the toolbar directly to the BlizzCon tickets page, to the BlizzCon main page and even to the BlizzCon forums so that I might stay up to date on what was goin on – didn’t wanna miss any updates from a “Blue” =).

Initially, they didn’t announce at what time they would be selling the tickets on the 16th, so I was planning to stay up all night to refresh the page. Thankfully, late Friday night they announced they would be selling them at 9am PDT. This allowed me and my brother (who was also going to buy a set of tickets) to get some shuteye. Both Cory and myself were up by 8am and started checking the page. With twenty minutes to spare, I was continuously refreshing the page … still not fully trusting that Blizzard would begin selling at 9am on the dot. Turns out I was right, and they went up for sale at approximately 8:58am.

Immediately I joined the queue and selected to buy 4 tickets. Already I was in 3000th place! I quickly called Cory to see where he was at, and he wasn’t too far behind me. We both were able to secure our tickets, which was followed up by calling the rest of our party.

The tickets sold out after about 28 minutes, I believe. The second batch was sold on the 30th, and are now sold out. Of course, some are selling tickets on Ebay for a significant profit margin =)

This year: me, Emily, Cory, Melissa, Scott, Mindy, Mrs. Nelson and Jennifer.

I believe I speak for our entire party when I say: and verily, much w00tage did thus fill the land =)

Upholding Dalaran by the power of the Kirin Tor,

1 comment: