I'm sure you all are aware of the saying that you should never meet your heroes; under the 'guise that you'll always be bitterly disappointed. And I'm sure that's true for some people.
I met one of my heroes the other day. I was invited to meet with my favourite games developer team, which was not only awesome, but also an experience I will keep with me for life.
It began with a simple conference. Anyone was invited to this, and I and a team of 5 other 'hardcore' fans were all planning to meet up and go together. Before the conference we had a meal (I was late, so when I say 'me' I mean 'everyone else'!) with one of the key team members - he was actually one of the co-founders of the company. A quiet man, though very humble. He acknowledged a conversation we had had on Twitter a few days before about dodgy train toilets - it was so weird to realise he knew me!
At the meal I also met the other fans. I had spoken to three of them online before and they were all outstandingly lovely. I also had the pleasure of meeting another fan and the husband of one that I had already met. They were all so friendly, it felt as if I'd known them for years right off the bat.
|Charles signing comics|
After the meal we all headed off to the conference. Charles (the 'big cheese' of the company) came and said hello to some of the fans he had met before, and the developer who had a meal with us slinked into the background and 'pretended' he wasn't a part of the team; all the while making sly, amusing comments as Charles spoke to the audience.
The conference lasted for about an hour. We recieved comic books and had them signed by key members of the team before we all headed off once more to go to an after party that we had been specially invited to attend.
This was where the magic really happened.
As we made our way from the conference to the BAFTA house (yes, the BAFTA house!) we all discussed how nervous and excited we were. Some of my new friends had already met the team, and others had not. All were equally thrilled to be meeting them. As we entered the building we immediately felt out of place. We were *not* in formal dress, nor were we celebrities. As we neared the reception we were unsure as to whether we would even be let in....
|Smiling like a lunatic!|
As we congregated in a small circle, not really knowing how welcome we were, a small woman we all knew to be Charles' wife came over and greeted us warmly. She asked us to get ourselves a drink, make ourselves comfortable and generally made us all feel like we belonged there. Eventually we were introduced to almost all the team members we already knew.
I was recognised by a couple for being active on the forums and submitting fan art. Everyone was truly wonderful; they were all lovely people.
And it is for that reason I implore you to take opportunities like this. I almost didn't go due to having to travel to London alone, but I am so pleased I took that risk. My cheeks hurt as I travelled home because I had been smiling so much that day.
I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and it makes me feel warm inside knowing that not only have I met my heroes, I have also befriended them.
So who are your heroes? And given the chance would you meet them? Let me know in the comments!
- Alice x x x
*pictures taken by Barry Banks. I'm wearing a Vibe (brand from Topshop) leather jacket and Gucci scarf if anyone's wondering ;)