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digiexpert

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  1. ACen Ball 2017 (Unofficial)

    Two weeks to go and the Ball doesn't have a thread, so here we are! Thread Questions: 1. What're you gonna wear? 2. What do you want 'em to play? 3. Got a date? 4. Other desires for the ball? --- I'll answer my own questions 1. Probably a dress of some kind, still gotta go hunting for one. I don't have a good cosplay for the ball so I can't just do that 2. "All ballroom" is my biggest hope but also unlikely. I'd like to hear a variety of things more than anything, but vastly less generic-party-music than ballroom, since it is a ball. 3. Yep. Started dating her at the ACen ball four years ago and we're still going strong. 4. Good lessons, more than anything. They make it so much easier to make the rest fall into place.
  2. Photos from 2016 Ball?

    Update: i sent an email to the main ball email adress, and received a response some days later. They told me that the photographer hasn't finished the photoset yet , but that when they do, they'll be posted to social media. I'm not entirely sure why its taking almost a month, but I'll give benefit of the doubt here.
  3. Photos from 2016 Ball?

    There was a photo booth and a woman taking floor photos all night. Does anyone know if those have been posted yet? If they have, I have not seen the link to them anywhere.
  4. 5 reasons why I'm not attending this year

    If I did a coat check, I would do it as such: 1: It would be an entire room. Probably one of the panel rooms in the Hyatt or something. There would be IRT manning it, probably two people so they can also watch each other. 2: When you go to the coat check, you are given a ticket with a number. It would be physically large-ish, but if you lose the ticket, you CANNOT recover your things. You would sign a form saying you acknowledge this when you drop off your stuff. It sounds harsh, but it's to protect both people's things and the con's liability 3: You can drop off more stuff than one batch, but it means getting another ticket and signing the form again. 4: Space would, even with a whole room, be limited. First-come, first-serve.
  5. Ballroom Review, 2k16 edition!

    I'll admit I left early, but it's in a similar spot to Karmada: I just couldn't keep dancing anymore! I would have loved to stay till midnight but left at 11. Which hey, I left at 9 last year so that's still a lot longer.
  6. I'm very happy. I went again, hoping it would be better than last year. And it was, by a huge margin! It wasn't 2013 levels of good, but if it continues in this path, it could be the best Con Ball not only ACen has ever had, but the best ball at any Con I have ever been to. I was skeptical going in, but from beginning to end it was a really good ride. Getting in line early, there was a line about a half-hour early. Disconcerting but all that meant to me is high attendance. Going with the trend ACen had this year, the line moved VERY quickly once it started moving, even actually getting people into the ball BEFORE the start time. No goodie bag again, sadly. But I see where the entry fee went to: a very nice DJ setup, with a supremely improved sound setup from last year, and significantly more refills of the refreshments than last year. When my date and I got in, we were very happy to see ballroom music played quickly. And even better, the missing lessons from last year were repaid in spades this year. The two instructors were friendly, learned, and helpful. They taught both a slow dance and a fast dance, plus Waltz being in 3/4 and Meringue being in 4/4 meant that a variety of songs could be played without worrying about people not knowing how to dance. A very good use of the half hour, and they were very thorough in how to do the dances in time and everything. The music was varied. I would have had more Ballroom played than was, but if the setlist were up to me, the Cha Cha Slide would be illegal and the playlist would be entirely ballroom. Even so, about whenever I thought to myself "It's been a bit too long since I've heard ballroom", they'd play another ballroom song. Usually they would play more ballroom than that even, so I'm happy with the mix. Even 90% of the non-ballroom tracks were from things like anime or movies, so that was much more excusable. It's a huge improvement over last year, where it was all top 40 and very little anime. I enjoyed even a lot of the non-ballroom pieces because they remembered that we are at an Anime convention. Speaking of requests, the DJ. He was so much better than last year. The request line was listened to, for starters. He even played the song I wanted to hear the most, the Eva cover of Fly Me To The Moon. As well, the sound setup was much better this year. On the dance floor I had to speak up in order to be heard but that's fine, since it's right there, and it was a large room so the music had to project. In the back of the room, I could speak at a normal volume and be heard. The room was so much better set up than last year. The music was also never tinny, remaining clear and hearable the whole time. I was super happy with this year's ball, and can't wait to see next year's get even better! My only actual complaints are thus: I'd like a larger dance floor next year, it was rather clumped when a lot of people were on the floor, but it seldom got too bad. Second, the Cash Bar is a problem I still want fixed, there were definitely a lot of underage people there, including small children that could easily get some absentmindedly unattended alcohol.
  7. Crystal Ball 2016 (unofficial)

    I'm very happy. I went again, hoping it would be better than last year. And it was, by a huge margin! It wasn't 2013 levels of good, but if it continues in this path, it could be the best Con Ball not only ACen has ever had, but the best ball at any Con I have ever been to. I was skeptical going in, but from beginning to end it was a really good ride. Getting in line early, there was a line about a half-hour early. Disconcerting but all that meant to me is high attendance. Going with the trend ACen had this year, the line moved VERY quickly once it started moving, even actually getting people into the ball BEFORE the start time. No goodie bag again, sadly. But I see where the entry fee went to: a very nice DJ setup, with a supremely improved sound setup from last year, and significantly more refills of the refreshments than last year. When my date and I got in, we were very happy to see ballroom music played quickly. And even better, the missing lessons from last year were repaid in spades this year. The two instructors were friendly, learned, and helpful. They taught both a slow dance and a fast dance, plus Waltz being in 3/4 and Meringue being in 4/4 meant that a variety of songs could be played without worrying about people not knowing how to dance. A very good use of the half hour, and they were very thorough in how to do the dances in time and everything. The music was varied. I would have had more Ballroom played than was, but if the setlist were up to me, the Cha Cha Slide would be illegal and the playlist would be entirely ballroom. Even so, about whenever I thought to myself "It's been a bit too long since I've heard ballroom", they'd play another ballroom song. Usually they would play more ballroom than that even, so I'm happy with the mix. Even 90% of the non-ballroom tracks were from things like anime or movies, so that was much more excusable. It's a huge improvement over last year, where it was all top 40 and very little anime. I enjoyed even a lot of the non-ballroom pieces because they remembered that we are at an Anime convention. Speaking of requests, the DJ. He was so much better than last year. The request line was listened to, for starters. He even played the song I wanted to hear the most, the Eva cover of Fly Me To The Moon. As well, the sound setup was much better this year. On the dance floor I had to speak up in order to be heard but that's fine, since it's right there, and it was a large room so the music had to project. In the back of the room, I could speak at a normal volume and be heard. The room was so much better set up than last year. The music was also never tinny, remaining clear and hearable the whole time. I was super happy with this year's ball, and can't wait to see next year's get even better! My only actual complaints are thus: I'd like a larger dance floor next year, it was rather clumped when a lot of people were on the floor, but it seldom got too bad. Second, the Cash Bar is a problem I still want fixed, there were definitely a lot of underage people there, including small children that could easily get some absentmindedly unattended alcohol.
  8. I'm looking to start a meetup for fans of BattleCON, 1PM on Saturday, May 21st in the Tabletop game room. I'll be bringing at least one copy (Containing all the games of it released thus far). Maybe we could get a tournament arranged even, if enough people show up for more than casual matches.
  9. Crystal Ball 2016 (unofficial)

    ACen is two months away, and no ball thread! So, I'm making this to unnofically discuss the ball! Thread questions: What are you dressing in? What songs do you wanna hear? What songs do you want definitely not played? Other comments or suggestions? ---- I'd love to have the ball be less like the last two years, and more like 2013. 2013 had a perfect mix of ballroom and funky stuff, and both got me into ballroom dance as a hobby and got me and my girlfriend together. I'm not going to rehash my posts on the other years, but they're got hard to find. I'd love to hear the Evangelion cover of Fly Me To The Moon (eva is totally anime,and that cover is definitely ballroom), and maybe The Hounds by The Protomen (a classic-style swing song about Megaman is ACen Ball-worthy, right?). I've made my dislikes clear enough in my other posts that saying them here is pointlessly repeating myself. As for what I'm wearing, either a simple combo of slacks, a nice Robert Graham shirt, and my vest from G by Guess, or whatever neat suit I find at Goodwill or Salvation Army between them and now.
  10. Formal Dance

    I definitely don't mind some popular music at the ball/prom/formal/whatever you wanna call it, but it could be kept in a formal way. For instance, Vitamin String Quartet does string renditions of popular songs (including the entirety of Panic At The Disco's A Fever You Can't Swear Out), or video game music such as from the ball scene in various Final Fantasy games. All of my requests were modern but ballroom (for instance, Siamese Cities is PUNK but is also perfect Tango).
  11. Formal Dance

    It's been a few days since the ball and ACen as a whole, and I feel like now is the time to gather my thoughts on the whole deal. Honestly, I very much disliked this year's formal. A lot of reasons went into that, but my main point is this: It's very clear to me that ACen has both room and demand for a full club-dance event, sort of a halfway between the breezy openness of the ball and of the pumping intensity of the rave. It's clear that enough people enjoy the club songs played that a club dance event would be most welcome at ACen. But as it stands, this was a mess of a Formal. Having gotten in line early, when the booth to buy tickets set up I had my date hold our spot while I asked when it would be open. They said it would be open shortly, and it was (Though the table got there at the time the ball was scheduled to start), and they claimed they would make an announcement when it was open. I Was near the start of the line, and was prepared to be such when they made the announcement that the line was open. No such announcement was ever made, so I ended up in a much later space in line than the one I waited in. Once I got to the front of the line, though, getting my ticket was quite simple and went fast. I also appreciate the 5 dollars off from last year, since ACen is the only con formal to my knowledge that is a separately ticketed event. As far as I know, they didn't run out of tickets so everyone who wanted in got in. That said, if the 5 dollars off is due to the absence of goodie bags this year, that was a 5 dollars I would have much rather paid, especially if those cake towels from a couple years back were returning. Once in, I was immediately met with club music. Okay, I thought, that's just for sound testing while everyone gets in. So, waiting for the more formal-appropriate music to begin, I went to a table and got some food (which, by the way, was almost empty when I left at around nine). Well...that wasn't just testing music. In the two hours I Spent there, I heard one slow song, and according to a friend of mine who stayed the whole time, there wasn't any more played. Also suspiciously missing from the setlist were anime-related songs. Now I know that it's not entirely needed to play those but we ARE at an anime convention, after all, so it felt odd that I didn't hear any. File that under more minor gripes. What isn't minor though, is the sound quality. Some songs were just fine, at a good volume and quality, while others were tinny, quiet and distant, and others were overly loud and booming. No idea if the people in the Battle Pods could hear it this year like last. A disappointing thing was a complete lack of any dance lessons. ACen was what got me into formal dance, and while I've learned enough that the dance lessons don't teach me, personally, anything new, they get people who've never really danced before into it. As well, by teaching people a formal dance like the waltz, chacha, or swing, it makes it easier to play more formal songs later in the night since people now know what to do to it. Even if there isn't a lesson in the ball itself, many cons have panels or events earlier that teach the dances. Kollision, for example, taught Foxtrot and Waltz in its last event in January, about four hours before the ball itself. I felt, by not having these, they made it that much harder to hold a good formal. Back to only having heard one slow song. I understand that you were going for a mix (Though I don't see why you can't have more modern-sounding ballroom songs), but a mix isn't all club music with one or two slow songs. There was a line for requests, given via text. I understand that, handwriting can be illegible and just telling him the requests could get all sorts of chaotic. That's actually a really nice touch. What wasn't so nice, is that I, my date, and a couple of my friends submitted songs (I alone submitted six: The Hounds by The Protomen, the Eva cover of Fly Me To The Moon, Get Swingy by Minimatic, Piano Man by Billy Joel, Siamese Cities by Metric, and Your Universe from Homestuck. A mix of modern feel and formal dance.) but not one from any of us was ever played. I don't know if anyone else had luck in their requests, but if their luck was similar to mine, that does not reflect well on the request line or the DJ. I did double-check the phone number multiple times to make sure I had it right, and the number I sent messages to matched the displayed number. Again, I hate the fact that no ballroom music of any kind was played. I understand this year was a prom theme, but proms still mix slow songs into it. I understand going for a more modern feel with the music, but there is tons of modern-sounding music, such as from video games and anime, that fits formal feel while still having the casual air most Con Formals do. It's the same complaint I had last year, where very little in the way of music fitting a Formal was played. A good thing that was done, though, was enforcing the dress code. Unlike previous years, I didn't see anyone in jeans-and-tshirts. I always feel con balls state a dress code then don't enforce it, so I'm happy to see them enforcing the dress code at a formal. Seeing three guys in jeans and sleevless T-shirts get turned away at the door showed that they were determined to at least keep everyone looking formal. My last point: The open bar. Now, My date ended up drinking too much and not getting let back in to the ball. I Would have stopped her if I realized just how much she was drinking, but that's beside the point. I even understand why they didn't let her back in. But I question two things: Why is there a no-limit bar (And I asked her, she asked the bartender about a limit and they said there wasn't one) without them expecting to, you know, drink a lot, and two: why are they serving no-limit alcohol (or alcohol at all) in an event where small children were in attendance? I saw very young children, five or six years old, at this event. It would have been easy for one of them to get at an abandoned cup of alcohol and drink it. That is a huge, huge problem. I don't think that this event needs to be age-restricted for any other reason than the serving of alcohol, so in interest of keeping it open I'd recommend not having alcohol served in the future. I'm unsure if that was all a-okay from a legal standpoint, I'm going to assume it is, but it's certainly odd and risky. As I said before, ACen needs a club-dance event. Maybe similar to the rave, where after midnight it becomes 18+ and they start serving alcohol to those with IDs, but its clear that there's a separate audience who's needs for a dance more relaxed than the rave aren't being met, and it's getting in the way of the audience that wants a high-quality formal like we had two years ago. I talked to various people around, and of the ones I talked to, a lot of them, especially the older attendees, agreed with me on both that there wasn't enough ballroom-type music played, and that there should be a separate club dance event for the ones that want that kind of event. EDIT: One of the workers of the Battlepods messaged me about me saying I wasn't sure if they could hear it or not, since they could last year. To just directly quote his entire message: "Hey, saw your post about the "prom". Ended up actually working for the Battletech people this year ontop of doing the $100 package. Yes, we could hear the base clearly even IN the pods (volume was at 100% inside them this year, not the usual 65-75% due to diff pod source). Most people thought the rave was next door talking about the lack of line (I corrected them, while chuckling)". So even with the pods being louder than last year, they could hear the bass noise from the ball over the battlepods. For those who've never been in the Battlepods, they are very loud. You would be hard pressed to hear someone yelling on the other side when you were in one.
  12. Formal Dance

    My problem is, last year's basically WAS like a high school prom, and I feel like the rebranding is just to justify keeping it like that. Again, I have no problem with that kind of thing existing at ACen, I just like the formal ball to stay formal.
  13. Formal Dance

    I still hold that keeping it formal is totally the best way to go. I'm not opposed to other musics but really, the best con ball I have ever been to was two years ago's ACen, where it was kept almost entirely formal. There's a place for club music at ACen certainly, as shown by the fact that there's always a healthy crowd when they play club music at night by the elevators, but I feel like it's not at a formal event. Let the ball be a ball, not feeling the need to change it to a prom after the years where it's been a ball because some people don't like formal balls. Again, I'm not saying those people are wrong, just that it means they shouldn't go to the ball, not that the ball should be changed. ACen has so much to do, leaving the formal ball formal should be how it is.
  14. Professionalism

    I am in no way ACen affiliated at all, but for the accountability, they could do it like Kollision and other cons; the panelist only gets their discount/free badge if they actually finish their panel. That way no-shows still have to pay, since you have to pay until after panel. As for fresh content, remember every ACen is someone's first. Just because you have seen a panel does not mean everyone in the room has.
  15. Crystal Ball 2014 - Feedback

    I agree, but I don't entirely blame the DJ. I assume the DJ was told the style of event that was being held and made musical choices accordingly. I have posted a lot of text towards both my complaints and praise for both this year's ball and the last, and I think that the ball could be even better next year than last year by taking the good from both. For my previous rants, see both the main crystal ball topic (now locked) and the topic on the crystal ball in the Suggestions/Gripes forum.
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