Saturday, 15 June 2013

Top 10 Reasons to go to BUCK!

It's almost upon us! The thrilling sequel, the second coming, the empire strikes back or as everyone else knows it, BUCK 2013! In just over two months Bridge Water Hall in Manchester will be opening their doors to the brony fandom for a weekend of awesome. As i've been waiting for this since last year's convention ended and I'm currently dead excited I thought it only fitting to jot up some of the best reasons to attend.

So, here we are! My top ten reasons to attend BUCK this year! List after the break.

1. Amazing line up of Special Guests!

Sadly last year we didn't get too many guests, there were a handful of community guests but no show guests! Well, don't worry this year, as I hope you do know by now we will be seeing quite the selection of VIPs! Prepare for some chaos (and maybe some unexpected trekkies!) with Discord's voice actor, John De Lancie himself making an appearance. On top of that there are three of the shows writers set to being attending, Amy Keating Rogers and Meghan McCarthy via teleconference and Cindy Morrow who'll be there in person.
There is also the possibility that more voice actors may be showing their faces as well, stay tuned for new announcements!

Check out the VIP section of BUCK's website!

2. Manchester is actually a really awesome place!

I know, you might have heard otherwise but trust me, it's truly amazing!
Many of my fellow Londoners have fallen in love with the Northern city, it still has all the benefits of a large city but has a much more relaxed atmosphere and much smaller crowds.
It's surrounding areas are easily accessible via the MetroLink.
Manchester might be known as the rainy city but not worry, the summer is set to be sunny!

During the week BUCK is going down there is also one of Manchester's largest events happening, Manchester Pride, so if you get chance during your time in the city be sure to check out the various festives the city's LGBT community will be getting up to.

The city centre is jam packed with shops, restaurants, bars and museums to explore. If you can, get Thursday booked and a late return on the Monday because there is lots you don't want to miss. Notable attractions include the Arndale shopping centre, Afflecks Palace for lovers of all things punk, The Printworks, Forbidden Planet, Travelling Man, FanBoy3, the museum of space and industry and of course China Town! For a lovely big list check TripAdvisor!

3. Meeting new people.

With over 600 people last year BUCK is set to break the big 1k this year! That's an awful lot of people with many new friendships waiting to happen!
It really is the people that make a convention what it is. Regardless of content, if you are with people you get along with you are bound to have a brilliant time.

Obviously BUCK is one of the best opportunities to meet online friends you may have never seen in the real world. Though most people attend BUCK in groups, even going alone isn't lonely, there are always like minded people around. This is probably everyone's number one most favourite part of conventions. Whenever the question "what was your favourite part of the convention?" is asked I can guarantee you that most people will say it's because of the people they met and hung around with.

4. The Summer Sun Celebration

The Friday of BUCK will be a night to remember with the Summer Sun Celebration, Europe's largest brony music festival. With a line up that is hard to beat, the Summer Sun celebration is going to be incredible. Talents include the Living Tombstone, Glaze (AKA The Wooden Toaster), AcousticBrony, General Mumble and many more.

With live music playing over the entire convention weekend over in the Bridge Water Hall, the con's atmosphere is going to be bumping! Also, this just in! Some of the musician's preforming at the SSC have put together an album that will only be sold at BUCK so make sure to pick one up! Check out the promo for an awesome teaser!

5. Fringe events galore!

On top of all what BUCK will be providing there are a ton of open spaces on the days around the convention that are to be filled with even more fun! Manechester has a lot planned, including their usual Muffin Meet on the Thursday, an epic pre-meet on the Friday before the Summer Sun Celebration and an after con breakfast on the Monday. You can be sure there will be many a party happening Thursday while Monday.

Check out the Fringe event tread over on UKoE for more details.

6. Sheer tons of Merch

I think we all love merchandise at the end of the day, be it Hasbro's official toys or t-shirts! BUCK has picked a fine selection of vendors.

If I am not mistaken, UK T-shirt maker Truffle-Shuffle should be selling their new Pony shirts so expect a change of wardrobe half way through the day from many people!
Everyone's favourite private retailer of MLP toys, Mareplay will have a whole array of stock on sale including tons of blind bags and lots more. Plushie Maker Bittertea and lots of other creative bronies will also be there selling their wares.

7. Fab Café After Party

As many other bronies would agree the after party last year in Fab Café, though unofficial, was probably the most memorable part of the weekend, heck even the year! This time around BUCK have booked the entire venue out just for us. With free access to the sound system be ready for all sorts of brony tracks and a non-stop rave all with fair priced drinks and nostalgic space invader crisps.

Fab Café is one of the strangest but fun bars in the world. With props from many popular films and TV series, a few arcade machines, pinball, foosball and a Dalek it's certainty got it's entertainment sorted.

8. Cosplay

It's not a convention without cosplay! The act of dressing up as your favourite characters and acting about is a tradition of all conventions and BUCK is no different. Many people last year dressed as their favourite pony characters, some anthro, some humanised and there was even a fur suit wondering about. I was very impressed with the costumes we saw, all were incredibly well made.

It doesn't even have to be strictly pony related, last year someone dressed up as spider man and there were an entire rainbow of morthsuits. Cosplay is all about losing yourself in the moment, some consider it roleplay others even treat it as a lifestyle. At the end of the day it's all about going back to your childhood, showing off your creativity and being silly.

9. Non-stop crazy antics!

No no, I haven't ran out of ideas to list, this is a completely legit and awesome point! Last year there was plenty of weird and wonderful antics happening during the weekend, too many to possibly ever list. A few memorable ones include an epic game of slenderman. Someone had hidden those notorious slender notes around the convention centre without warning and we had to collect them. Why? No idea, but it was fun!

I have to say I was shocked to see the Dance Dance Revaluation machines last year, but certainly not disappointed. There was some epic battles of dance, I wish I had took them for a spin myself.
I am sure they will be making a return this year as well as a Smash Bros. Brawl tournament and other competitive games available for play.

10. It's actually pretty low cost!

Now I hear the screams of horror coming from a mile away but hear me out!
Other popular conventions, such as the one that is a bit more furry, stand at around £300 for accommodation and entry, BUCK is a lot less. For four nights in the Premier Inn next to Bridge Water hall is costing myself and my friends £100 each. (two people in one room, that includes a double and single bed). There are plenty of other options as well, if you're willing to use the Metrolink there are hotels in and around the city centre that are a fraction of that cost.

What's special with BUCK is unlike other cons, the pricing is separated! Standard entry is only £55 which works out to £27.50 a day. The after party and SSC are £20 and £15, in fact it's wrong to call the Summer Sun Celebrating a party, it's a full blown festival shindig with streamers and everything! On top of the standard entry that is £90 for complete access to BUCK. So to include accommodation that is £190, which is as you can agree significantly cheaper than £300!

On top of that it's pretty cheap to get to Manchester from practically anywhere in the country!

I hope this has encouraged anyone sitting on the bench to buy tickets! There are many other reasons to go to BUCK but the best way to find out would be to just come along! Hope to see you all there in August!

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