I caught Con-flu so I've been a bit out of it this past week. Anywho, time to jump into the opinions thread!
-The much praised Air-con!
-The parking was so fantastically convenient that I nearly wept. As someone who regularly makes trips to their car to deposit purchases I can say with certainty that I do not miss the RNA oval hop.
-I'd like to reiterate the point about tiered seating. Normally I'm stuck down the back of the theaters at Brisnova due to being lazy and getting to panels very close to their start time. Whereas this time I was ushered into my seat with nary a hassle.
-Staff were excellent as always, although some were confused as to the location of one-off events like the Cosplay Chess.
-The number of 'Professional' photography companies present over the weekend was mind boggling. You normally have a few people who have their own Deviant-art photo business but to have well framed, lit etc. photos taken was heavenly. Especially when most of the companies have published them for free on Facebook.
-Selection of Merch. I found a lot more variety this year then I am used to in the traders hall. Normally, there will be a dozen different stalls selling exactly the same items. Also, the Gunpla making station was fantastic to see.
-Location, location, location. I stayed up in Surfers at a well-priced hotel and even then my daily trip time was about 10 minutes to and from the con. The facility was very easy to enter, leave and find. The streets are a lot less congested then those around Gregory Tce. too!
-Fox tix! I think that the venue requires the use of these guys but they were amazing! The Print-at-home ticket option removes all of the worry about the Postal service taking too long. Once I was only able to collect my tickets on the night of Preview night despite ordering them over a fortnight in advance.
-Despite it being brought up several times, the line did suck pretty hard on Saturday morning. I arrived at 8:30 and was still too late to line up indoors. Despite this being a regular occurrence at the RNA it was still slightly depressing to be separated from sweet, sweet Air-con by an inch of glass and hundreds of people.
-I had initially thought to keep this to myself but I decided to share it to improve future con's. On the Sunday I arrived with my group on 10am as the doors opened. However, instead of joining the 2+hour queue we instead went up the escalator in the main foyer to the top level. On the top level we were able to circle around and enter the trading hall via a set of internal stairs. All up, a 10 minute job instead of 2 hours of waiting.
-Another 'exploit' I found was on the Saturday afternoon. I paid for my parking at the machine like a good little boy only to arrive at the exit and be waved out without having my ticket inspected at all. This appears to have been fixed by Sunday however as a 'pay-on-entry' system was in place.
-Water facilities. I noticed the stacks of cups for decanting liquids and my initial thought (shared by those around me) was that there would be water being handed out to those of us standing in the hot sunshine. This might be a nice addition in the future as it would have most certainly eased my discomfort for standing out in the sun for an hour and a half.
-Weapons policy. I was going to put this as a pro but decided to put it here instead. As a group we had between us an 8 foot scythe, a staff weapon and a large gun. In previous Nova's we have carried everything from full-sized Buster swords to tiny katanas. Normally, we are pounced on by staff before even entering the venue and told to visit the weapons cloaking. This year, we were given free reign to carry these props everywhere including the main traders floor and several panels. I noticed some other very large props being carted around the traders floor and saw several instances of the public being smacked or inconvenienced by them.
All in all I am eagerly awaiting Brisnova then Goldnova 13!