A key part of the story is missing here: Saticoy walked away with a full, retail copy of Uncharted 2.
I'm sorry about the lack of food, saticoy, but I hope that this in some way went towards making up for that.
So I guess since Saticoy got a copy it makes up for the 65 other people who didn’t get one, myself included? Y’know, the ones who were yelling “Where’s the food?” and “Where’s the rest of the raffle?” Yeah, that’s rational. Tell ya what, if you send me a free copy of Uncharted 2 I’ll reconsider the chargeback I’m filing with my credit card for the event along with a complaint letter sent to all the marketing, PR, and other execs at Sony.** I suggest that every other person disappointed with the event do the same.
**For those of you confused by this passage, please first look up the definition of facetious. Also, please understand that I'm trying to make a point, not ask for free stuff.
Let me try and make this as coherent and brief as I can, I’ll start from the beginning-
As I said, I read the rave review given by Darknessbear the night before the OCT 6 event, including the mention that everyone got a free copy of the game. I hadn’t heard of these events before so I Google searched “uncharted events” and was brought to this page:
The first thing I noticed was the update on the top of the page which said:
I then read on to this part:
UPDATE: All VIP tickets are gone for the October 5 events. But you can still purchase tickets for the October 6 events! Click on the links for each of the cities below to purchase tickets, or contact the theaters directly to secure a spot.
The date is Monday, October 5, 2009. We’ll have food, an on-site tournament for a chance to compete for prizes, and the opportunity to meet the talented team from Naughty Dog. And best of all, a giant theater screen to see (and a chance to play) UNCHARTED 2 in big-screen glory. This is a very special event, and space is limited … And if you can’t make this October 5th event, contact these same theaters for the Tuesday, October 6th UNCHARTED 2 event. Tickets might still be available!
At this point, as far as I knew, there were two, identical, Uncharted events happening at a movie theater near me and I still had a chance to buy one. This was enough info to convince me, especially with the possibility of scoring a free copy of the game. The only other page I read before purchasing my tickets was this one:
If you can’t wait until October 13th, SCEA and Sony Electronics have partnered to produce four exclusive “sneak peek” events that bring UNCHARTED 2: Among Thieves to the big screen before launch. At these VIP events, attendees will join Naughty Dog in a night of food, fun and Multiplayer tournaments with the chance to win lots of cool prizes—including the Fortune Hunter Edition. Attendees will also have the chance to play UNCHARTED 2 on the ultimate high definition big screen, powered by Sony Electronics 4K digital cinema technology, which provides image resolution four times greater than any high-definition consumer television out there. Sony Electronics is working with major theaters across the country to create “digital destinations”, pairing 4K digital cinema technology with enhanced services and amenities, such as food, sporting events and music, to create an unprecented entertainment experience. UNCHARTED 2 will be one of the first pre-released games showcased at select sites.
The “sneak peek” events will take place on 10/5 and 10/6 at the theaters below. Stay tuned for more information from Jeff and Chris on how you can win a guaranteed spot. In the meantime, click here for more information.
Both of these pages clearly state that food will be served at both events. The first page had no indication that there was a difference between the two events, and since I didn’t click on the link that did explain the VIP/General audience disparity I was in the dark. Still, food was promised regardless.
I called the movie theater the next morning to order my ticket (despite what the blog said, you could not order online). I figured, even if I didn’t get a free copy of the game, I’d still have the chance to chill, get some food (it was a planned 5 hour event), compete in the tourney, and check out some Uncharted. So, I made the 45 minute trek to Thousand Oaks to attend.
Got there and once everyone was seated, we were greeted by the unsurprisingly enthusiastic emcee. One of the first things he told us was that there would be a raffle for 20 copies of Uncharted 2 and a PS3 Slim. That pretty much confirmed not everyone was getting a copy, but with 80 people in the tourney, it left a 1 in 4 chance of getting the game.
As he began to talk about the tournament, he continued bringing us good news; he announced that the runners-up from last night’s tournament were here again to try and win. People around me groaned, “Are you fucking kidding me?” I thought to myself. In case you missed that, the team of 5 that already played in the tournament, the team that came in second place, the team who already got copies of the game last night -- were in tonight’s competition. Now I can’t fault these guys, they paid their $16 to get back in, but as far as being on a competitive playing field goes, everyone else there was immediately at a handicap. Which brings up another point about teams, I had thought (and read) that players were to be placed in teams at the event, which you were, unless you already had a team coming in. So if you didn’t have a set team, you were finished before it started; all the top placers had at least 3 players that knew each other beforehand.
On to the tournament, remember that ‘chance to play Uncharted on the big screen’? Well, that really wasn’t true. The only people that were playing on the theater screen were the team captains from one team only. And they weren’t actually playing on the big screen, they were playing on a tiny 27” monitor while the game was displayed above them. So nobody got to actually play on the theater screen. I mean, it’s not like the PS3 has wireless controllers or anything.
Now, before you were to play in the first round of the tournament, your team would be called down to the front rows 2 matches ahead of time. Due to some error, out team wasn’t called down until 5 seconds before our game started. So I had no idea who was on my team and what they wanted to do before the match started. The problems go on from there. You couldn’t use boosters and you couldn’t change the controls. “Hey! You like to play with inverted controls? Well you.” The controller itself felt worn out, like it had been used at every trade show in the past 5 years. All the games were 5 minute deathmatch rounds on new maps, which is sort of understandable due to time constraints, but it left little time to get into any sort of rhythm during the game; especially if you don’t know the maps ahead of time(unless you had the game the day before!). As with the captains, we all played on small screens. Unfortunately, your head was forced to be within two feet of the screen because the cord on the controller had no give. The TVs also had that god-awful Motion plus technology turned on, which created lag between the controller and the display and made the game really hard to look at, very jittery and like it was dropping frames. This effect is amplified when you’re standing two fucking feet away from the screen. As a bonus, there was no sound except from the action on the main screen, which was hilariously disorienting.
Our team lost, but it didn’t really matter as you can guess who won – the team from the night before. By my count, 5 of them got copies of the game the night before, they also got signed copies of Uncharted: DF for placing 2nd, and they got the five Fortune Hunter versions. And here’s the kicker, two of them won raffle copies of Uncharted 2 from the pot.
Aside from the tournament, the rest of the show was a disappointment also. As was mentioned by others, there was no food or refreshments, not even water. Let me remind you that this was a planned 5 hour event. As you read just above, food and refreshments were promised in multiple pages advertising the event.
In between the tournament rounds, the co-lead designer would talk to us about the game, show us some clips from the single-player, and then they would hold a portion of the raffle. It was basically a big advertisement there and everywhere else. I lost count on how many times the emcee asked us to ‘give it up for Sony’ or ‘Let’s hear it for Playstation.’ They acted as if they were doing us a big, gigantic favor by letting us pay to sit in a movie theater and preview a game that’s coming out in a week (he called it an historic event). Furthermore, the never-before-seen footage of four single player levels was a farce seeing as two of the scenes had been on the internet for over a month. Every time they would raffle off a copy of the game they would remind us that this is for a game that is not available in retail stores yet and the winner would get to play it before everyone else. Uh, no shit? Do you think I’d even be at this event if the game had come out a week ago? They went even further, saying that winners would be getting a copy before the people at Naughty Dog would. MY ASS. That’s like telling my girlfriend that she’s getting to play with my junk before anyone else ever, including myself. Sony – I understand that you’re trying to sell your product but please don’t try and sugarcoat the bullshit.
Throughout the entire evening there was a small group of obnoxious douchebags randomly yelling obscenities and comments at the top of their lungs. These are the type of people who have to be really loud to get attention because daddy either beat them or left them when they were younger. It wasn’t a problem at first, most people laughed (nervously) and tried to ignore them. But it didn’t take much time for people to get sick of it. No one managing the event bothered to tell them to stop; it wasn’t until one woman told them to ‘shut the up’ that emcee mentioned that everyone should keep it under control. Here’s the other kicker, two of them won copies of the game from the raffle.
Rounding out the substandard night was the blunder of a raffle. Like I said, we were told they would be raffling 20 copies at the beginning of the show and by the end they had only raffled 15. I asked someone with Naughty Dog right at the end of the show and he either didn’t care or didn’t know and told me to find some lady with a binder outside of the theater. So I found her and asked why there were only 15 copies raffled and her answer really drove home the theme of failure from the whole night. She told me that there was a mistake and she counted 20 copies based on the amount of breaks she thought there would be in between each tournament round (when they held the raffles) Soooooo, instead of counting how many copies of the game she actually had, she instead decided to count how many raffles she thought there would be and then multiply that by 5. At this point 80% of my brain had already melted so I decided to off with whatever was left and just walked away.
[FONT="][FONT=Verdana]I think the most dismaying part of this whole experience has been the response from Sony/ND, both at the event and in the last thread. The best they can seem to muster is an ‘uh, yeah, sorry about that’ while they go on their way. They seem to not care or understand that most of us made time for this event and went out of our way to get there; we also paid money to get in. To put on such a show and then not recognize that mistakes were made and at least be legitimately sympathetic about it is inexcusable. I may have not been so bitter had I payed only $5 for the mediocre tournament, but $16 for a 5 hour advertisement? No thanks. I’m still excited for Uncharted 2, but I will never attend a Sony-sponsored event again and I will encourage everyone I know to do the same[/FONT].[/FONT]
Edited by Ugamer_X, 14 October 2009 - 01:53 AM.