Is GenCon Over-Crowded w/ Massive Long Lines for Everything?
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Posted by garhkal

Fut the whuk?  Did you by chance report that pizza vendor?

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Posted by kidlidar

Report it to who?  There was a thread on this forum about this a few months ago and that discussion had something to the effect of "Hot box is the official pizza of GenCon"  I said something then and it fell on deaf ears.  The best I can do is not give that pizza place my money

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Posted by garhkal

Isn't there like a Better business bureau like org you can report them to??

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Posted by brotherbock kidlidar

kidlidar wrote:
Report it to who?  There was a thread on this forum about this a few months ago and that discussion had something to the effect of "Hot box is the official pizza of GenCon"  I said something then and it fell on deaf ears. 

To be fair, it's not like they're going to retract their deal after the fact if they hear complaints once it's been negotiated. Now through the con and right after is when to be voicing these sort of issues for next year. 

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Posted by turner

I generally avoid crowds, and lines. If you're interested in GenCon, it's worth the travel time. If you're only interested in a few of the most popular things, yeah you'll probably be waiting in lines or they may already be sold out anyway. There are SO MANY other things to do the entire time that you'll be busy as long as you want to be.
I like to go to the dealer hall on Friday and Saturday- they close at 6, and I will save most of my gaming time for after then. Mayfair Games has a GREAT setup- buy a ribbon (I think it's $25) and you can play unlimited Mayfair games for the whole con. You can collect ribbons for each new game you demo, and they have drawings & prizes on Sunday. We usually do most of our Mayfair demos late at night.
The lines I've seen: Will call (sometimes, not always), Swag bag line, a couple celebrities I wanted to meet, True Dungeon, and usually food if we go to a restaurant. However- ALL the lines I've encountered in the 3 years we've been attending, have moved faster than most other places, and the crowd is amazingly nice people. 
So yeah, ignore your friends. It's worth attending.

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Posted by lanefan

To further echo what's been said, the only major lineups I can remember seeing are:
 - Will-call (but it moves really fast - which is good for those of us who have no choice but to use it)
 - Celebrity signings (these can be slow; trick is to get there early...or not bother)
 - Author's/artist's avenue where people line up to pay for their purchases (not going to be an issue this year, I believe; it's being done differently)
 - Auction consignment store (this one's random - sometimes it's nice and fast (or short, or nonexistent), other times it's a bog)
 - Lineups at specific vendor booths for deals, giveaways, etc. (random)
 - Various restaurants and bars near the ICC (oddly enough, though I don't like lineups these don't bother me much as they're a great place to meet people)
 - People getting to major events early to get a good seat (self-inflicted)

The crowd outside the dealer hall at 9:55 a.m. Thursday I don't consider to be a lineup.  It's more like an unofficial event in and of itself.

The only other place/time things really get jammed up - and I mean jammed up good - is when most of the main floor of the ICC gets taken over at about 3 p.m. Saturday for the costume parade.  One year I got trapped in the Auction room for half an hour.  Another year this jam-up made me late enough for an event that I got dropped from it.  You'd think I would learn from this and make sure to be elsewhere, but every chance I get I manage to forget about the parade until it happens...by which time it's too late.

Other than that, however, lineups and crowds aren't much of an issue at all.

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Posted by divachelle turner

turner wrote:Mayfair Games has a GREAT setup- buy a ribbon (I think it's $25) and you can play unlimited Mayfair games for the whole con. You can collect ribbons for each new game you demo, and they have drawings & prizes on Sunday. 

The Mayfair Games Ribbon is $20 (Event Code is ZED1697907). It's a great deal!

From the Event Description: This ribbon allows you entry into any of our ticketed events & our evening Git-Togethers throughout Gen Con (excluding tournaments and charity events). Open gaming library included!

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Posted by aaronmlopez

I'm not sure that Gen Con could be called "overcrowded". Yes, it is a lot of people in a relatively small space, but it's no different than a college football game or our state fair. Heck, the town I live in is smaller than the Gen Con attendance, so anything there is going to seem crowded to me. But it is not so packed that it seems like the world's largest gathering of sardine imitators. It will be much busier than what I am used to day-to-day, but it is also well worth it.

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Posted by kidlidar brotherbock

brotherbock wrote:
kidlidar wrote:
Report it to who?  There was a thread on this forum about this a few months ago and that discussion had something to the effect of "Hot box is the official pizza of GenCon"  I said something then and it fell on deaf ears. 

To be fair, it's not like they're going to retract their deal after the fact if they hear complaints once it's been negotiated. Now through the con and right after is when to be voicing these sort of issues for next year. 

True, I didn't know who to say something to.  Maybe one of the admins could post something here as to who to talk to?

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Posted by rutherfordr

I looked at the food trucks, and the lines, and though to myself, "It's a trap!"
 

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Posted by monkeyknifefight suburbaknght

suburbaknght wrote:
For years we did call-ahead ordering, mostly at Noodles & Co., for takeout.  Last year they discontinued it during Gen Con.  I understand that customers in line get upset when someone walks by, gets their good, and walks back out, but doesn't it make sense to encourage more people to do call-ahead and schedule time to get their food rather than get stuck in a two-hour line?
Interesting. I was planning on that being my go to place for food. That's a shame. I am running out of places I like to eat at GenCon.

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Posted by ironsphinx

I love eating at restaurants when on vacation (both new and ones I've been to before) but Gen Con has reached that tipping point where I have started to bring more and more of my own food for breakfast, dinner, and snacks. And it's not a "save money for the dealer room" issue, it's an "I don't want to wait in line for an hour or two to get a table" issue. Granted, at Gen Con, I'm usually eating alone, either because I'm at the con by myself or because my schedule rarely meshes with my friends. So if there's no room at the bar, it's even harder to get a table. Would love to pump some money into the local Indy economy, but it's just not that feasible anymore. About the only place I can consistently find a space to eat with a not-too-long line is at the ICC cafeterias. Wish the food was of a higher quality, but, you take what you can get. :)

Last year, the food trucks I ate at weren't bad--the quality of the food for what they were charging was decent enough--and the lines weren't too long when I went. My issue was not being able to find somewhere to sit and eat afterwards as we weren't supposed to bring outside food into the ICC. :p

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Posted by nikki ironsphinx

ironsphinx wrote:
I love eating at restaurants when on vacation (both new and ones I've been to before) but Gen Con has reached that tipping point where I have started to bring more and more of my own food for breakfast, dinner, and snacks. And it's not a "save money for the dealer room" issue, it's an "I don't want to wait in line for an hour or two to get a table" issue. Granted, at Gen Con, I'm usually eating alone, either because I'm at the con by myself or because my schedule rarely meshes with my friends. So if there's no room at the bar, it's even harder to get a table. Would love to pump some money into the local Indy economy, but it's just not that feasible anymore. About the only place I can consistently find a space to eat with a not-too-long line is at the ICC cafeterias. Wish the food was of a higher quality, but, you take what you can get. :)
Last year, the food trucks I ate at weren't bad--the quality of the food for what they were charging was decent enough--and the lines weren't too long when I went. My issue was not being able to find somewhere to sit and eat afterwards as we weren't supposed to bring outside food into the ICC. :p
You know, I think it's worth the quick walk to the food court at the mall rather than stay at the convention center for their food.  Just a thought.

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Posted by suburbaknght monkeyknifefight

monkeyknifefight wrote:Interesting. I was planning on that being my go to place for food. That's a shame. I am running out of places I like to eat at GenCon.

To be fair, there still are several places that do call-ahead and carry out.  Spaghetti Factory and Bucca di Beppo are the best at it, but they are pricier than Noodles & Co.

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Posted by monkeyknifefight suburbaknght

suburbaknght wrote:
monkeyknifefight wrote:Interesting. I was planning on that being my go to place for food. That's a shame. I am running out of places I like to eat at GenCon.

To be fair, there still are several places that do call-ahead and carry out.  Spaghetti Factory and Bucca di Beppo are the best at it, but they are pricier than Noodles & Co.
Price really isn't the issue. Its mainly that I like Noodles a lot more than bucca di beppo and Spaghetti factory. In fact last time I attended GenCon in 2013 Noodles was the only place I had a good meal so I was hoping to make it my go to place to eat. Now I'm looking up places on opentable to cover my bases.

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Posted by firvulag nikki

nikki wrote:
ironsphinx wrote:
I love eating at restaurants when on vacation (both new and ones I've been to before) but Gen Con has reached that tipping point where I have started to bring more and more of my own food for breakfast, dinner, and snacks. And it's not a "save money for the dealer room" issue, it's an "I don't want to wait in line for an hour or two to get a table" issue. Granted, at Gen Con, I'm usually eating alone, either because I'm at the con by myself or because my schedule rarely meshes with my friends. So if there's no room at the bar, it's even harder to get a table. Would love to pump some money into the local Indy economy, but it's just not that feasible anymore. About the only place I can consistently find a space to eat with a not-too-long line is at the ICC cafeterias. Wish the food was of a higher quality, but, you take what you can get. :)
Last year, the food trucks I ate at weren't bad--the quality of the food for what they were charging was decent enough--and the lines weren't too long when I went. My issue was not being able to find somewhere to sit and eat afterwards as we weren't supposed to bring outside food into the ICC. :p
You know, I think it's worth the quick walk to the food court at the mall rather than stay at the convention center for their food.  Just a thought.

I would completely 2nd this.  If you are in any kind of hurry, this is your most efficient option (next to a vending machine or starbucks muffin).  

Food trucks:  when you combine the lines, the pricing, the horrible customer service, and the inconsistent quality, it's just not worth it IMHO.

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Posted by aldctjoc firvulag

I'm not trying to dispute other people's experience, especially since I don't know all the factors at play. But I've simply not run into problems timewise with resturants. Even ones relatively close. I think it REALLY helps to go at off peak times and be willing to walk a few blocks. 

But again, yes, I realize I can't take everybody's circumstances into consideration. There will be times that someone's only got peak food times free, and yeah, that'll be an awful experience. But folks are making the difficulties sound so continuous and consistent, and from my point of view, it's simply not been that bad, as long as the peak times are avoided and a bit of distance - not too far, certainly no further than some hotels are - is taken.

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Posted by zaphod

The Indy City Market is filled with great places to eat and has relatively short lines:

http://www.indycm.com/

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Posted by divachelle zaphod

zaphod wrote:
The Indy City Market is filled with great places to eat and has relatively short lines:
http://www.indycm.com/
Has anyone gone to the market from the con on a mobility scooter? I'm wondering about accessibility and the sidewalk quality between the two. Looks like it's about a 10 minute walk, so not too far. 

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Posted by garhkal

Looks to me a lot more than just 10m walk..  I'd say 20min..  As its on the other side of the mall.

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