geekery/personal: the westworld experience at san diego comic con 2017

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While waiting in line at Hall H of Comic-con, I heard buzz about the West World Experience. It’s supposedly one of the best off-sites at Comic-con. Someone showed up with a white cowboy hat, which was the swag for the off-site. It was very high quality and looked amazing. Seeing that hat made me want to go in line for it.

I didn’t have a fancy press badge, so that meant I had to stand in an overnight line. There weren’t that many people willing to stand in an overnight line for something that wasn’t Hall H, or Exclusive merchandise, but I eventually found some. We made a line group, and the first of our member started standing in line at 3 pm.

I had checked in around 8 pm to see how the line was doing, it was at that point pretty much already full. And since the day before the wristbands were handed out at 5 am, I figure to be safe I should be back in line at 3 am. So I went back to my hotel to grab a nap and had told my line friends that I would be back at 1 am.

Going to sleep early was hard and I kept tossing and turning. For some reason, I checked my phone at 11:30 pm and thought about heading back early. Then I saw a text message from the person standing in line for me, and she said, “The HBO people are here early! They are about to give out wristbands!”

Still in bed, at a hotel a mile away, I immediately sprung into action. My roommate told me to give up, but I wanted to give it a shot. So put on clothes, ran outside, and thankfully there was a cab. The driver carefully, but quickly drove me past way too many red lights, and I flung a twenty dollar bill at him, at a ten dollar fare because I couldn’t wait for change.

I arrived at the line five minutes before they gave out wristbands.

So that was my adrenaline filled story of how I got a wristband to see Westworld.

The experience started with booking the appointment with a host. There was an automated piano playing songs familiar from the series, and everything was immaculate. The host gave me a time and direction to the offsite.

Once I arrived at the offsite, our group of six was winnowed to a group of three. We explored the costumes and weapons that were used in West World. While we were waiting, we asked a bunch of questions with the hosts. I asked him if was happy, and he answered, “I’m am always happy working with Delos Corporation.” Earlier I had asked, “Are you a robot” and he answered with the iconic line from the TV show, “If you can’t tell, does it really matter?” One of the main fun was watching the hosts as they answer your questions. Some of the actors were really superb and quick with the answers.

Our group of three was then given a tour, and split into one on ones with personality consultants. The amount of personal care was amazing for the crazy jungle that is Comic-con. I was asked a bunch of morality questions like, “If you had a button that could save all of the world’s problems, but would kill half of humanity, would you: 1) press the button 2) Hand the button to someone else to decide or 3) destroy the button and the person who made the button.”

After the personality evaluation, I was given a black hat!

We were also shown a video, where the other clients watched the video, but I watched the Host, and she was really creepy. Her eyes rolled up and she stood completely still. There were a bunch of glitches with the video too.

Then we were led to a saloon where we were given three different artisanal drinks. One of which was lit on fire and danced from one cup to another. Another was a milk punch.

I told a host that there was blood on the piano, she leaned in and looked at it and said, “I don’t see anything wrong.”

When I was leaving the saloon, she said, “This is just the beginning” in a threatening away.

The whole experience was quite amazing, and I am really happy with my cowboy hat. I had to wear it on my flight back to Texas and I felt like I was a different person.

Thank you, Westworld!

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