Hello Anaheim

Yes, I literally just got back from California earlier this week, but I went back again a few days ago for DreamHack Anaheim at the Anaheim Convention Center.

Anaheim Convention Center

I originally wasn’t planning on attending, but one of my co-workers was making the drive up from San Diego, so I decided to join him at the convention. Anaheim is also far closer of a drive from Las Vegas than Beverly Hills, so I was more willing to make the trip over.

There were a few other conventions going on at the same time as DreamHack Anaheim, and the rest of the Convention Center was open to the public, so I managed to make my way up to the upper floor to get some good shots of the area.

Anaheim Convention Center

Anaheim Convention Center

Anaheim Convention Center

DreamHack Anaheim was relatively uneventful and felt the same as any other convention I’ve been to. My co-worker and I made it there early, so it actually felt a lot emptier than it probably actually was. A lot of the popular games nowadays are games that I can’t even watch due to motion sickness (I get dizzy when watching first-person shooters), so going to events and conventions has become even more unappealing to me, as if it wasn’t mo­not­o­nous enough already.

Fortnite at DreamHack Anaheim

DreamHack Anaheim BYOC

DreamHack is known for their bring-your-own-computer (BYOC) tournaments. As the name suggests, you actually literally bring your own computer into the Convention Center and use it to compete in the tournament.

Security is notoriously bad at gaming conventions and events, where it is more of a security theater than it is real security. They make you empty all your pockets, open all your bags, and go through a metal detector before you’re allowed in the secured area. This discourages already-law-abiding citizens from bringing weapons onto the convention floor, but it does nothing to actually stop someone intent on causing damage, as none of the guards were armed with lethal force to stop attackers.

What I saw at DreamHack, though, was an all-time peak in incompetency and failure. Remember the BYOC system I just told you about? Most people bring their computers, monitors, and other gaming equipment packaged in boxes. Those boxes never get opened or checked, and just get rolled through a side aisle past security. That means that someone intending on harming convention-goers can buy a BYOC admission pass, load up “computer boxes” with lethal weapons, and cause immense bodily harm.

And of course, with California gun laws, I, as an out-of-state resident, cannot carry a firearm… nor can a vast majority of in-state residents, because permits are rarely issued to begin with. Letting massive boxes of unknown equipment through security checkpoints while preventing trained individuals from carrying lethal self-defense weapons seems like a disaster waiting to happen.


DreamHack Anaheim

Luckily, things overall weren’t as terrible as I might be making it seem, because there were a lot of Tempo Storm members in attendance, so I was with pretty good company. During the time we weren’t in the Convention Center, we went to visit the Downtown Disney District, which apparently is the “other half” of Disney that you’re able to enter without having to pay an amusement park admission fee. (Photos from Disney will be in a separate post.)