2002 BotCon Dinner & Post-Show Panel

At each seat for the dinner there was a bag containing one Armada super-con (Demolishor, Hot Shot, or Cyclonus) and one Mini-Con team (Street Action, Air Defense, or Ground Military). One seat at each table also won two Heroes of Cybertron figures.

All of these items are currently available in stores, although they weren't expected to be. The dinner exclusive had been previously meant to be an animation cel from the Armada cartoon, but that plan became mired in legal hassles somehow related to the decision to air the series exclusively on Cartoon Network. This was told to 3H something like six weeks before the convention (I don't remember the time precisely, but I think it was in that area). Their first attempt at a "fix" was to get Storm Jets for everybody, but Takara wasn't interested in producing them separately or something; I didn't quite understand what Glen said. So, then they went for the Armada and HoC toys. Hasbro didn't have enough HoCs on-hand to provide them for everybody, so we only got two-per-table. And, predictions at the time for Armada's shelf-date put it in mid or late August, which would have meant that we'd be getting our dinner toys at least a few weeks before mass release. Basically, a sequence of bad luck is what resulted in us walking away with no tangible exclusive.

On the other hand, the first episode of the Armada cartoon was shown at the end of dinner. My thoughts on that are in a separate post.

3H Enterprises is now 3H Production Studios, Inc. The exact meaning of the name change isn't clear to me, but the point is that 3H has now acquired licensing rights of many sorts from Hasbro (the license agreement is 45 pages long). What I think it means is that previously, they cooperated with Hasbro and Hasbro technically produced stuff for them. Now 3H is considered the producer of their stuff. But I might be wrong. ^_^;

One of the things Glen has a license for is an official Transformers Fan Club. It appears uncertain whether this club will be aimed at kids or older collectors, or both. Among the hopes/plans for the club are a publication/magazine of some sort and annual toy exclusives.

The scavenger hunt was cancelled near the last minute. The reason for this is that they simply didn't have enough time left over to plan it out. They give games their lowest priority in planning because they consider them to be less important than things like the exclusive merchandise. So, it fell by the wayside.

The toys came in late -- only two days before the event. They had to pack 1500 toys in the space of six hours. They mentioned that the Cyclonuses were already boxed; I guess they came that way from Hasbro, but the unusual CatSCAN box had to be packed by hand by 3H. And, not surprisingly, that would mean that the sealed bags with Tap-Out and Glyph were already sealed when they arrived. With 1400+ pre-registrants, a batch of 1500 toys would have to be just one of the exclusives.

As stated before, over 1400 people pre-registered. Roughly 600 of those pre-registrations came in right near the deadline. About 2100 people attended the convention overall. NOTE: 600 our of 1400 pre-regs were right under the wire... that's more than 40%. Please, please, please guys... don't procrastinate on pre-registering. The sooner 3H gets committments and money from the fans, the sooner they can figure out what their budget is going to be like, and the more time and effort they can put into planning the convention's events.

The next installment of the Wreckers story will be brought to us online in some capacity (text stories, probably) during the course of the year, and the story will wrap up at the next convention with part four in comic book form.

Primeval Dawn is awaiting full approval from Hasbro. As soon as it is OK'd, it'll go up on 3H's website.

I don't remember what question prompted this, but Glen was talking about the many color variants that Takara releases, and started listing some, and said, "red, and black, and fire guts, blastin-butt..." ^_^ So now everyone is waiting for a Blastin'-Butt edition of some toy. Maybe BW Inferno, or Rhinox? Later, when expressing his belief that something was unlikely to happen (again, I forget what) he said "I'll be dipped in wax and called a candle if that happens."

BotCon Europe will have five exclusive items (not neccessarily toys).

There is not a lot of flexibility in choosing the date for BotCon. They basically tend to go back and forth between two weekends in July. If they hold it too early, a lot of kids and college students will still be in school. Then there's July 4, which they need to avoid. And, there are lots of other conventions in the summer which they don't want to be simultaneous with, such as the Wizard Worlds / Comic Cons.

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