Category Archives: Geek Life

Gaming isn`t the only thing that interests us here at GameOnGNT. We like all sorts of things surrounding geek culture, be it conventions, comic books, anime or cosplay!

Should you take your children to Calgary Expo?

Going to Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo at the end of the week. Another big year with taking the whole family. Second time we’ve done this and to be completely honest, I have one goal for this year.

To have fun.

I’ve got to be honest, last year was pretty stressful. It was the first time I ever brought children to Calgary Expo, it was my first time hosting a panel and I was also trying to cover off all of my GameOnGNT commitments (interviews, features, etc.). Add to that the bullcrap we ran into with our hotel that year and its safe to say it was one of the toughest years I’ve ever had going to the event.

And a lot of that could be attributed to the age of my kids, who were four, one and five months old at the 2017 Expo. In hindsight, it might have been better to put off a full family trip to an event like this.

Now that being said, I wouldn’t say I had a bad experience. Stressful, YES, but bad? No.

Seeing my children’s reactions to everyone in costume, along with seeing my daughter meet one of her favorite Disney Princesses (Jasmine from Aladdin) were highlights of my trip. We also made some pretty great videos as well, with my daughter doing Cosplay Bingo and my wife and regular contributor Shayla experiencing her first Expo.

So this year, we are returning with the whole family, all a little older. What I’m doing today is giving you all some advice if you plan to bring kids to Expo for the first time.

1. Prepare to not see everything on your wish list.

Paige with Princesses

You need to be ready for things to go wrong. More importantly, be prepared to miss out on some of the events or panels you want to check out. Basically, no kid wants to spend the entire day sitting in panels listening to celebrities talk about their shows.

Luckily, Calgary Expo has some fantastic areas for kids to play. Last year, the Agrium was Kid Zone and had kids play areas, organized activities and even story time. It was wonderful for them.

In reality, plan for the panels you want to see, but expect to nix those plans if one of your kids has a temper tantrum or needs some downtime.

2. Have food at the ready.

Food vendors may be all over the place at Calgary Expo, but there is no guarantee they are going to have food to cater to your little ones. Its always good to come with food you know your kids are going to enjoy. Last year, we packed some sandwiches, apples, bananas, squeeze packs, fruit cups, good foods that the kids know and have regularly.

The other benefit this has is saving you some money. The food vendors are great, but they can be expensive, especially when you have four or five mouths to feed in your family.

3. Be prepared to leave early.

Kids crashing Calgary Expo.jpg

Your kids may be having a blast at the event, but they are also way smaller than you and likely haven’t experienced an Expo before. Trying to get in a full day at Expo may be impossible for the younger ones.

So if you got to see that Back to the Future panel at the end of the Friday schedule, maybe start your day at Expo later on. If you have to see The 100 panel at the start of Saturday, expect to leave closer to dinner time.

4. Call in some support.

Steve with Logan

If you got some friends who are coming to Calgary Expo too and your kids are comfortable around them, travelling as a group might save you a lot of headaches if you have more than one kid.

We luckily had my brother and niece along with us for last year’s Expo, who spent time with the kids while my wife and I checked out a panel. It was a great break for my wife and I while my kids enjoyed some fun in the Kid Zone. A win-win for everybody.

5. Don’t force cosplay.

Paige with cosplayers

Its great seeing your kids in costumes, but you also want them to be comfortable.

I didn’t even humor the idea of costumes with my youngest two. As cute as it was to see the baby BB-8 in the Calgary Expo promo videos, I felt getting my one year old and five month old decked out in costume throughout the weekend would be a little too much.

My oldest daughter Paige decided to wear costumes every day of Expo. On the third day, she decided to ditch the costume halfway through. It happens. Kids get tired… be prepared with a change of clothes.

All in all, be ready for some stress, but also get ready to enjoy a great family moment!

As for my Calgary Expo hit list with the kids…

– Meeting Belle from Beauty and the Beast and Ariel from the Little Mermaid.

Belle and Paige.jpg

– KID ZONE (Always a must for them. Here’s hoping no rain this year.)

Kid Zone Play

– Parade of Wonders. My kids loved this event last year. It really starts the day right!

Calgary Parade Route

– Pot Smash (BMO 300). What better way to feel like Link from Legend of Zelda than smashing a pot and getting a rupee. Another thing my daughter loved last time around.

– Quidditch (2 PM Sunday) My wife had a lot of fun trying this out and my kids had a lot of fun cheering her on. Maybe this time around we’ll get my daughter on the Quidditch field to play!

Shay Quidditch

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The Band of GameOn – Take On Me

In case you missed Paige’s Calgary Expo adventure yesterday, it ended in a spectacular way…

Here’s the Band of GameOn – Take On Me.

And remember, if you ever want involved in some often spectacular, but definitely crazy moments, be sure to find your way to GameOn’s hotel during Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo. Its worth the trip.

Paige’s Calgary Expo Adventure – Let’s Play Cosplay Bingo!

More Calgary Expo content, nearly two months after the event has run its course.

We’re a little slower out of the gate this year (Moving to a new house will do that), but this fun video was worth the wait.

This was my daughter Paige’s first year at Calgary Expo and on top of dressing in costume all three days she was there, we also gave her an adventure of her own… Cosplay Bingo!

Paige was given two Bingo cards to fill out throughout the course of the event. Her goal was to get as many pictures with cosplayers as possible and fill up the card.

Check out Paige’s adventure at one of Canada’s biggest conventions. Thanks to all the cosplayers for taking part!

GameOnGNT Adventures in Cosplay – Thoughts on Calgary Expo 2017

GameOn’s Jeff Johnson and Blaze Dobson talk about their experiences with cosplay at the 2017 Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo.

Blaze shares his experience meeting with Todd McFarlane, issues with Calgary Expo’s fast pass system and the thrill of taking four costumes to this year’s event.

Thanks for watching and apologies for the delays. More content from this year’s Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo coming soon!

Sightseeing at the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo

GameOn’s Kyle Born took some time to take in the sights at this year’s Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo.

Rather than taking the time to discuss the many things we regularly see at this awesome event, we realized a picture says a thousand words and thought we’d let the pictures do the talking.

Then we realized those thousand words don’t include witty jabs and barbs, so we let Kyle Born share his words anyway.

Have a look through the many sights to be seen at the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo.

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Thoughts on the Calgary Expo Guest List (so far)

I’m happy to see the list of new Calgary Expo guests that came out Tuesday! Here’s my top picks so far…

Nathan Fillion – Firefly, Castle, Dr Horrible
Kevin Sorbo – Hercules: The Legendary Journeys
Will Friedle – Batman Beyond, Boy Meets World
James Marsters – Spike (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)
Colm Meaney – O’Brien (Star Trek TNG and DS9
Linda Larkin – The Voice of Princess Jasmine from Aladdin
Mara Wilson – Matilda, Mrs Doubtfire
Keith Tucker – One of the guys behind Animaniacs

While I like the guest list we have at the moment, I am surprised about a couple of things not found there.

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– No cosplay guest announcements yet… Not a showbreaker, but they usually have about three or four cosplay guests every year. In the past, they’ve had Jessica Nigri, Ivy Doomkitty and Lindsay Elyse. Where are the celebrity cosplayers on the guest list? I can think of some great additions we haven’t seen at the show (Lady Kayleen, Abby Dark-Star, Kamui Cosplay, Kelly Jean, Rosanna Rocha Cosplayer, Knightmage, Living Ichigo all come to mind.)

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– No wrestling guests! Last year, there wasn’t a wrestler at the show, which was surprising because there was always wrestlers in attendance in past years. Some of the big names we’ve had include Mick Foley, Edge, Trish Stratus and Bret Hart. Definitely a missed opportunity here if they don’t get somebody. Maybe bring in Kane or the Big Show? Ric Flair, The Nature Boy? Really, what have they been doing in WWE lately?

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– Few voice actors… Will Friedle and Linda Larkin are great additions and I can’t wait to meet them, but I’m surprised there are none involved in anime. I’d also like to see them increase the number of voice actors involved in video games. I’d love to see people like D.C. Douglas (voice of Albert Wesker in Resident Evil), David Hayter (Voice of Solid Snake in Metal Gear Solid), Bryce Papenbrook (so much anime) and Vic Mignogna (Full Metal Alchemist, Broly of Dragon Ball Z fame)

 

– No representatives from the following shows… Star Wars, The 100, Supernatural, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Prison Break, Gotham, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter. All shows that we’ve had guests from in the past and I would love to see involved again. I realize you can’t have the same shows involved every year, but they are big fan draws! I also haven’t seen a guest from the 100 at Calgary Expo before and as a fan of the show, I want that to happen!

I want you to keep in mind, this isn’t a complaint. I love Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo and will always enjoy visiting the show. For me, I’ve always loved seeing the show as a whole, visiting vendors, seeing the amazingly talented cosplayers wandering the halls and just having fun travelling to the Expo with my group. These are just my thoughts on some quality guests that would round out the experience.

What about you? What guests would you love to see make an appearance at Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo this year?

Let us know!

Captain America: Civil War not what I was expecting

I don’t know what it was about Captain America: Civil War. It had all the makings of a perfect movie for me, but it just didn’t deliver for me.

High expectations; check.

Great previews; check.

Comic book history that resonates with me; double check!

So why am I left with a longing after spending over two hours watching this movie on Netflix?

It was a good movie, don’t get me wrong. The battles were amazing and new additions like Spiderman and Black Panther were fantastic, but there were some things about it that didn’t do it for me and just didn’t match up with what it could have been.

THE VILLAIN

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Is it just me, or did anyone else find it hard to keep track of the villain in this movie and his motivation? ┬áBaron Zemo didn’t seem like much of a villain throughout the whole feature and it seemed like a very complicated effort was taken for a revenge plot. His end goal was to get the Avengers to kill each other and all he did was master a coded book to control the Winter Soldier, travel to various locations around the world, manipulate countless government agencies AND the Avengers and kill five Winter Soldier like operatives.

It almost would have been easier to invent time travel and kill the Avengers when they were kids. And where the hell did this guy get the money to finance this scheme? Were his dead parents Thomas and Martha Wayne?

THE MOTIVATION OF OUR HEROES

What made Civil War stand out so much as a comic was the deep seated motivation of our heroes on either side of the battle. Having this entire fight be motivated by Baron Zemo’s manipulations really takes away the oomph of that.

Also, late in the movie, we have a truce between Iron Man and Captain America, but the second Tony learns how his parents died, we’re back in a full-on battle again. To me, the kill switch seems pretty forced. It would have been better if the battle was motivated by the injuries War Machine received earlier in the movie. Instead, the heroes are played like a fiddle again, thanks to the manipulations of a C-ranked villain.

THE MISSING LINE

Did I miss one of the best lines from the trailer or was it not even in the movie?

“You just started a war!” – Tony Stark

Where was that line in the movie? I did not see it anywhere and was waiting for it the entire time. Not having it just left a little disappointment for me.

Granted, this is a minor qualm and nowhere near as bad as Rogue One trailer editing. So much was left on the cutting room floor with that one. But it’s such a pivotal line and a partial title drop. It seems odd to remove it.

FINAL THOUGHTS

To me, this movie needed more of a build-up. Civil War is a comic event that is tough to translate to a single movie and I feel required more of an emphasis on competing viewpoints, as opposed to manipulations of a villain who was really lacking. A true hero vs hero contest.

I wouldn’t go as far as to say this was a terrible movie though. It had really cool action sequences and great character moments, but it didn’t resonate nearly as strong as Captain America Winter Soldier or Guardians of the Galaxy. A lot more could have been done with some great material and great potential.