And so it ends. Our trip to Austin was fantastic. We did an absurd amount of walking, met some interesting (and some very interesting) people, and got to attend panels hosted by some of our favorite internet personalities.
I realized that I never gave much of an explanation of RTX in my early posts for those who are unfamiliar. RTX is a convention hosted by Rooster Teeth, the makers of Red vs. Blue. My husband has been a fan for years, and introduced me to their work. The convention is primarily focused on their content, though there were other guests as well. We went to a panel hosted by 343 regarding The Master Chief Collection, for example, and got to see Bungie reps playing an early edition of Destiny with fans.
My favorite part of the trip, however, was the first panel we attended:
The RWBY Panel
RWBY was Rooster Teeth’s first anime, and I have to admit, I was a little hesitant at first. I really wanted to like it. It took a couple of episodes, but I got my wish. I’m a sucker for anything fairy tale based, and RWBY draws a lot tales and folk lore. If you like anime, give it a shot. If you don’t like anime, pretend it’s a cartoon made for adults (because it is). The link to the first episode is below. The animation begins a little weak, but it improves as the season continues.
We were lucky to get decent seats at the panel, where they showed the first episode of season 2. I couldn’t have been happier with it. It flowed like a normal TV show, smoothly following the stories of various characters. We were also promised that season two would have 12+ minute episodes, which is an improvement. They varied quite a bit in season 1, and it made it disappointing to stumble on the short ones.
My favorite part was watching the writers and actresses interact, though I’m disappointed to say our pictures weren’t great. I did snap this one later though:
This is a picture I took in the Rooster Teeth “Museum,” where they displayed several items from their shows. We went there right after the RWBY panel and saw them putting the gear the actresses had worn (as they cosplayed their own characters) back on display. Still on a RWBY high, I took a picture, thinking to myself that I’d probably regret taking a picture of stuff later, because pictures of stuff are never as good an idea as they seem in the moment.
Until I realized that I’d actually taken a picture of Monty Oum, the creator of RWBY, standing behind the table.
The Slow Mo Guys Panel
Besides the 343 panel (which is much more my husband’s area than mine), the other big panel we attended was Slow Mo Guys, which closed the convention on Sunday. If you haven’t heard of these two, their videos are addictive and hilarious. Gavin runs a slow motion camera, and they capture everything from the beautiful to the painful and hilarious, with Dan taking the abuse. I put a link to one of their pretty videos below.
We went to this panel impulsively, and it was the perfect way to close the convention. The panel was far more enjoyable than we expected. Dan was hilarious, walking on stage with a soccer ball taped to his head, “cosplaying himself” from one of their videos. They also showed some videos that they aren’t planning on publishing due to the content – blood, swearing etc. I appreciated that they gave us something new to watch after sitting waiting in line/sitting on ground/in a crowded hall for three hours to see them.
I’d never used StreetPass before this trip, which made watching my map its own entertainment. StreetPass is a Nintendo 3DS feature that allows you to see and play with the “Mii” characters of people you pass who are also using StreetPass. One part of StreetPass tracks where your exchanged Miis originated, filling a map. Since I’d never used it before, I knew that every highlighted location on the map belonged to someone I passed at the convention, and who was also using the system.
(I was too lazy to go through the process of getting a screen shot from the DS, so please forgive the quality of the pictures.)
I passed people from 37 different states, plus people from the UK and Canada. That helped put the 30k attendees into a new perspective for me, especially these are just the people I happened to pass who happened to be carrying around a DS using StreetPass.
I already shared all of the shopping we did, but there was far more to the convention than that. Another big thing was meeting Patrick from Quick Draw the day after we’d attended his panel. I was repeatedly impressed by the gracious behavior of this crowd. They had 30,000 people there going nuts over their work, and I never once saw anything but a polite, if not joyous, response from any of them. We didn’t wait for autographs because we prioritized going to events over signatures, but we were amazed at how many impromptu lines appeared. Some of them would show up on a hall with some guardians and allow lines of fans who wanted selfies and autographs to develop.
As far as Austin goes… It seems like a nice place. I can’t say we did too much exploring, but the part of the city we were in didn’t feel any different from being home. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t expect to see cowboy hats everywhere or any of that other cliche Texas stuff, but I expected some noticeable cultural differences. I can say that every bar we passed was blasting music mid-day, which certainly isn’t the case here. I’d like to go back and see more of Texas (and Austin) at some point.
Here’s some more of what we saw: