MAGFest 2018


I have a conspiracy theory that it’s not third parties. A “scalper” on the event’s payroll does it, so Taylor Swift doesn’t get flak for selling $4,000 tickets or whatever.

I have no proof of this. I just suspect it’s happening.


My annoyance is more that I had to buy a nonrefundable 59 dollar ticket to be in a lottery to find out if I have a place to stay at for the event. Other years for Magfest id make sure I had a place to stay before I bought the ticket. This year they made that a non option.

I think because of friends I might still be ok, but others, who might have spent even more on day one tickets might not be as lucky.


How do you figure?


You needed to get a ticket for the event or they wouldn’t send you a link for the hotel booking. That was my understanding at least.


As far as I know that’s the case, but nothing magfest did prevented you for making sure you had a place to stay before buying the ticket. It’s what I did.

Not to say circumstance or whatever couldn’t cause this issue. I’m sympathetic to that plight, just don’t feel it’s fair to lay that at magfest’s feet.

Magfest’s only crime is being too big for east coast con infrastructure. Maybe vegas could comfortably contain it at it’s current size but maybe not. Hard to say.


For a variety of reasons (mainly that I had to work when the 7PM start time happened, and I work using my phone so I couldn’t just leave it on the reserve screen), I didn’t get a hotel room through MAG. Neither did my one roommate who could be on a computer. Another roommate decided to book something across the river, but I remain slightly concerned about traveling (and getting roped into leaving earlier by people). Waiting to see if MAG does get more stuff in the Harbor and if I can nab a reservation.

Not mad at MAG, mad at the situation.


You should be mad at MAG. The problem is that more people want to go to MAG than there are hotel beds to fit everyone. Seems like there’s just no solution? There actually IS a solution. MOVE. MAGFest has outgrown the space and needs to move somewhere with more hotel capacity. They refuse to do so.


They are not selling out and there are easy hotels within a short distance from them and easy public transportation. Maybe people have to deal with the fact they can’t be in the con hotel sometimes.


Move where though? I know of not bigger con infrastructure anywhere on the east coast.

I deal with that just fine. If I have to commute to the con, I likely don’t go, making the problem that much less of one for everyone else. It’s kinda a self regulating system that way, I think.


No one wants to be outside of walking distance to the con. See also: PAX East. And last I checked, all the walking-distance hotels were sold out or ludicrously expensive.

Have you ever used the public transportation to/from MAGFest from anywhere else?

MAG is going 24/7 and people want to come and go at odd hours. Frankly, MAG would suck if I weren’t right by the con itself, and I probably wouldn’t go.

The single limiting factor for PAX East attendance for a long time has been hotel space. There simply aren’t enough hotels. The only reason it’s not that bad in Seattle is that the con is spread out across a ton of hotels, and the weather is nice during PAX.


Yeah, the reason I wasn’t just cool with my roommates and their “10 minute drive” hotel was that I want to stay at MAG past midnight and I don’t want to be stuck driving other people back and forth. They were saying “Uber” but that sounds like a horrible idea.


Uber is always a horrible idea.


I’ve heard the Lyft services are better than average but yes avoid Uber. Also water taxis may be I service that will drop you off at the Gaylord.


I let a friend handle the hotel room getting for Magfest a few years ago and we ended up with a 10-25 minute commute. It changes it from 4 days of having fun with a few planned things mixed in (panels, concerts, meet up with friends for dinner or some board games) to basically needing an itinerary for the entire thing.

The hotel booking thing worked alright for me, but we also coordinated to have multiple people waiting and whoever got in first booked the room.


There will never be a place that can serve these kinds of conventions AND have adequate hotel availability. It’s not feasible.

This is a problem that can not be fixed.

PAX East is limited by hotel space (and now also convention center space… day trippers take a lot of the badges).

PAX West is limited by convention space primarily (due to Seattle being extremely walkable such that most of the hotels are close enough)

MAG is limited by hotel space.

No gaming con will ever get better in this regard: they can only get worse and there can never be adequate spaces to cover the true demand.


Sad update, the discord channel found the secret spot.


If the way I currently get a room stops working, I’ll probably stop going to MAGFest.


We’ve had this argument before. I posit Vegas could handle it. Whole thing is walkable. Tons of rentable space. Way higher hotel capacity and likely the con space can handle a 24 hour/day con.

Downsides: it’s vegas.


Thnankfully they in the discord didn’t put 2+2 together so I think rooms at that location will still be fine. Thankfully if the new hotel opens up next year it should help the situation and at some point MGM would also want to make money so more rooms are comming but not sure how fast.


East only draws this crowd because of the huge proximal population. If PAX East moved outside of the New York/Boston/DC megalopolis, attendance would drop by over half overnight.

MAGFest would lose probably most of its current attendees if it went to Vegas: they can’t afford to fly there.

Most cons draw mostly local attendees who can’t actually afford to travel. That’s why if you go to any larger con outside of the biggest population centers, it’s 90% locals who don’t ever go to other cons.

PAX West, Dragoncon, SDCC, NYCC might literally be the only exceptions in terms of drawing a truly global audience.

The mega convention centers truly suck from an attendee perspective, and NONE of them are proximal to the big nerd populations. And frankly, if the Vegas con infrastructure were somehow transported to the Northeast, I posit it STILL would not be enough. I believe strongly that without physical limitations PAX East would sell 150k+ badges.