Forums  /  European Speedrunner Assembly  /  ESA Summer 2019 Feedback Thread
  JackOfHeartsJackOfHearts

For me personally it was the best ESA I've attended. I'll start with what I felt was improved from last year.
+ The tech area being hidden away made for a much nicer and neater look to the main hall as compared to last year where it was off to the side with all the equipment and boxes strewn about behind the computers/consoles where the runs were happening.
+ Larger arcade with a better selection of games (nothing like 5am Jubeat while it's empty)
+ Having co-commentators names appear on screen using RFID codes (though giving them to the runners as well seemed redundant)
+ Seemed like tech was more on point than usual, despite all the delays everyone certainly did their best.
+ More runners from NA/Asia/Aus helps make the event feel even bigger and I met many amazing people who otherwise wouldn't have come.
+ Speedgaming tourney room was a fantastic idea and Feasel did a brilliant one man job coordinating with people

Now, sadly, to what didn't quite work for me
- Lack of instructions on the arcade machines for switching games. Maybe I was just blind and missed a sign but I didn't know you could switch to other games until very close to the end of the event.
- Quiet practice room was not always quiet and a severe lack of pc's didn't help the situation (though I understand this is mostly due to the sheer increase in numbers)
- Temp/guest badges needs to be a thing for people who are only able to attend (or only want to) for one or two days
- Quality of the badges is not very high. The art is fantastic but the material is too easy to bend or rip.
- Volunteers only being compensated by vouchers to spend at the hotel. I get we no longer had the Dominos deal going so I'm not asking for free pizza but anything bought at the hotel was extremely overpriced in comparison to elsewhere. Last year volunteers were also given free tickets. So the value of compensation for volunteering this year seemed about 20% of what it was last year. (I'm still going to apply again because I enjoy it but it may put people off in the future, letting volunteers know the perks BEFORE they sign up would be great)
- Lack of staff at EVERY SINGLE food outlet in the area. This is a problem that the city of Malmo itself should probably address. They should liaise with local businesses better and let them know they will need extra staff during large events. I heard of people waiting upwards of an hour for (so-called fast) food and this seems unacceptable.
- No clear rules on the food/drink situation on the event floor. After the karaoke incident I was informed by the lady working the staff counter that the whole first floor should be devoid of ANY food that was purchased outside the hotel, as well as, of course, alcoholic drinks. Which is totally fair if that is their rule. However, clearly very few people knew this since it was probably harder to find someone who didn't eat or drink on that floor.

And finally while this is not event specific its more of a general problem with the discord server. As a volunteer at the info desk I often found myself looking for hosts/readers for whatever reason and while you can ping individuals on there if they aren't looking at their phone they may not even see it. It's fine having different channels open for the hosts/readers/tech etc but there should be a General Volunteer room where everyone volunteering can communicate more easily with each other. And having the reader/tech/donation/mod schedules posted for all volunteers to see would help too.
J♥

 
  BlueHarveyBlueHarvey

There are a lot of pros, too many to be able to list them all.

Positive:
+ Ice cream machine
+ Infodesk was always able to help huge respect to those guys
+++ Feasel did an AMAZING job with the tournaments, the etup planning and everything
+ Traveling is made a lot easier due to QHV having a really good location.
+ I have mixed feelings about the Stream schedule but it was generaly ok.
+ We were able to talk to Edenal in Person. In a lot of other events, being able to just talk to the organazier is not really a thing. For me thats pretty huge and I appreciate it a lot.
+++ Huge shoutouts go to AuraXBorea, she helped clean the room by her own will and this is something you don't really see these days.

Cons:

-This is the con about the 20$% and 25$% run
I thoroughly enjoyed the 20$% Yakuza run, haven't had such a cramps from laughing in a long time.
BUT, I'm almost sure Stream 1 didn't enjoy it when it got THIS loud on stream 2.
Because the same thing happend to us during our run on stream 2 while the GTA Vice City 25$% run happend.
It was noisy, loud, and just almost impossible to hear anything that happens besides the other stream.
I was connected with my runner and the came via a "noise canceling headset", which didn't really work since I was not able to hear the game or my runner when he was commenting the run, I only heard stream 1 going crazy loud during the GTA run, My runner and the hosts were almost just a muffle in the background it was that hard to hear anything. We even asked if there were donations and (sometimes) weren't even heard by the hosts. Even after our run ended, people who were in the audience for the Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age run, came up and were complaining that it was incredibly loud, and really hard to understand anything. They even mentioned that twitch chat didnt like it either.

Idea to handle(?):
If those 20$%/25$% runs happen again (and I hope they will, they are amazing)
Then please do them on Stream 1 AFTER Stream 2 already finished. Or do it in a way so that no other Stream gets interrupted by the other one being loud.

thebpg13thebpg13 and JackOfHeartsJackOfHearts like this. 
  TootooTootoo

This was my second ESA event and even though I didn't think it was possible, this year was even better than last year! Thanks everyone for organizing. Already looking forward to ESA Summer 2020. ❤️

+ The location is amazing. Super easy to get to and the hotel is great. Superb wifi and everybody loves ice cream and PopCorn. Also loads of good restaurants close by.

+ Everyone organizing, including volunteers, were super nice and friendly. Loved the 24 hour info desk.

+ The separate arcade room was a great addition. More of everything please. But please put the rhythm games and the other games like pinball far away from each other.

+ Really nice to see Stream 2 get more attention. Made me actually remember to watch a few of the runs on that stream.

+ The schedule this year was perfect for me. Managed to catch everything I wanted to see (i.e. the NES blocks) and still get proper sleep in between runs.

+ I didn’t participate in any tournaments but the speedgaming addition was awesome. Would love to see this again next year. Props to feasel, he worked A LOT and did a great job.

• Now with a little bit less space for practice/regular gaming it quickly became a bit unorganized. Would be cool if groups of people (like the NES crew) could sign up to get some dedicated and more organized space in the upcoming events. With signups it would be easier to allocate more appropriate space for each "clique".

• It would be nice with some kind of info poster/leaflet with information about opening hours of restaurants and pharmacies etc. in the area. Perhaps including a map.

• The bar closing at 11pm was a big disappointment. We were usually hanging out there when we were a big crew and wanted to take a break from the stream room. With a 24/7 event I'd expect them to keep it open at least a little bit longer some of the days.

 
  GellyGelly

First time at ESA, and was very impressed with the whole event! Will go again, if able. I'm not sure having a first timer reflect on how great the event was would be helpful, as I don't really have a baseline to compare it to, so I will just reflect on the cons. Don't consider this as negative, though - if I didn't comment on it, it was fantastic!

- Having both streams and more going on in one room was certainly a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it definitely demonstrated a more relaxed and less uptight interpretation of the stream - just here to have fun! - but that was taken to a perhaps disrespectful extreme in some cases. I was interrupted once by the extreme celebration surrounding Street Boyz, and I know I wasn't the only runner. As well, I thought it tasteless for the GTA $25% run to have a bunch of people run over to Stream 2 and draw attention away from the stream - while it was donated by someone else, it didn't _have_ to be accepted. Having all that activity in one room was far better than I expected, but definitely had its issues.

- I don't think the "having the audience full at 8 am for the tv crew" thing was executed well. I don't know how the Need for Speed runner felt about the entire audience in exodus after an A-OK from staff, but it definitely seemed uncool.

- No idea if this is just how ESA is, but it was irksome to have more runs than not go over estimate. I heard of a couple instances of people submitting runs where their estimate was faster than their PB, which seems to defeat the purpose of an estimate. I don't know if this is an issue with the marathon itself or how people treat it.

- PC room was a nightmare, but I'm certain there are other people who can express the exact issues with it better than I can.

That's really about it! Not a lot of complaints from me, but high praise to tech, to hosts, to organizers, and to the entire community! Very glad this was my first event, and I hope to see you all at another event!

NoobSalmonNoobSalmon likes this. 
  RuSyxxRuSyxx

This was my first time attending a speedrun event and I can't explain enough how helpful and welcoming everyone was. I went to this event only knowing who a few of the attendees were, and left with many new friends that I look forward to hopefully hanging out with again in the future. It was easily one of the best events I've attended in general.

Thoughts:
*With this being my first event, I can't comment on the difference between having stream 1/2 in the same room vs different rooms, but I do want to echo some of the comments mentioned previously. It was sometimes really hard to not be distracted by the noise from different runs when one was more exciting than the other. A solid example being the $20% Yakuza run which is where I noticed it the most. (Granted in retrospect had I known what it was I'd have been watching it rather than stream 1, but that's a bit irrelevant here) It was very hard to keep up with what was happening because everything going on in stream 2 at the time was loud and distracting. Secondarily, while I did love the street boyz, I think after all the pop offs on just the first day next to stream 1 that it should have been relocated earlier to avoid distraction as well.

I loved the glitch showcases, but would like to really recommend that the volume is balanced better. There were several that I couldn't hear the commentary of while sitting in the crowd and also while watching the stream from the hotel TV.

Karoake was fantastic and should be advertised earlier than the day of, easily one of my highlights from the event. (Even if we did find out we were violating some hotel rules with the food/drinks, which can hopefully be better articulated next year).

Arcade room -
Pros: I spent more time than I'm willing to admit on the pinball and jubeat machines, and would love to see even more options/variety of them next year.
Cons: The lack of directions on how to change games or how to obtain a Jubeat card (egame card?) seemed like it could have been an easy fix. I know there was a sheet handed out from the desk when you bought one from the website, but I only discovered you could buy a card from the website after another attendee noticed me trying to figure it out. Perhaps some kind of posting?

Also just as a suggestion, perhaps make the projection of the stream can be made an official part of the arcade room? I know someone else set it up of their own will but it helped make the arcade room feel more attached to the event since you could watch runs as you were playing.

Tournament Room:
Pros: For a regular attendee, this was a great treat since I got to meet and compete with so many people and Feasel did a great job organizing things. I would love to see a full team to help support it next time.
Cons: It wasn't uncommon for the tournaments I signed up for to have multiple people unable to make it due to sign ups being posted without a scheduled day and finding out people could no longer participate. I think one thing that could be done is require discord/contact info to be included in sign ups from the beginning rather than after its scheduled. Maybe even just have a dedicated server/chat/channel to help distribute information.

PC Room:
Its genuinely hard for me to give a positive here because I was only able to get on a PC twice during the week. I wasn't a runner in the event, but would have loved to be able to go in and run the games I do run regularly.

Board Game Room:
Was fantastic even if I didn't spend as much time in there as I'd have liked. Just wanted to give a shout out to eTho for bringing such a wide selection of games and of course organizing the MTG sealed event.

All in all the entire event was great, and I can't wait to attend another in the future.

 
  BaalNocturnoBaalNocturno

ok this will be a mess but whatever

pros:
- Location is amazing, cant be stated enough
- Info Desk. Felt a lot better organized this year shoutouts to Panda and Pottoww
- Stream 2. The fact that it wasnt in a small room but instead neighbouring stream 1 was pretty good.
It felt nice to be able to just hop inbetween to runs at any given time without losing content.
- The general organisation. Everything felt super well organized (sure theres always some issues but that cant be avoided) from scheduling to hosting to tech, every volunteer and team leader did a fantastic job!
- EVERY SINGLE ATTENDEE! You guys make ESA a blast and eventhough theres quite some people i never talked to, all of you make this event feel like home and a 2nd family ❤️

cons:
- Nothing that ESA organisation can really do about (maybe inform them beforhand somehow idk?), but McD isnt quite the best. Its the only thing thats open rather late and their service is sub optimal, wrong orders, horrendous waiting times.
- Spacing. Theres not enough space at the point where ESA is now. Alone the NES crew takes up a huge amount of space. That combined with Street Boyz left hardly any place for others. Same goes for the PC room, not enough PCs and it was always super crowded.

Special personal con:
A specific crew saying they need EXACTLY the monitor i was using during practice, while they had another one which was like just a tiny bit smaller feels a bit weird. Especially not nice if you agree to the monitor change mid practice run which somehow managed to crash the game and then comming back IMMEDIATELY after saying they solved the problem. Not nice, not nice at all, that whole community is dead to me now

 
  KZ_FREWKZ_FREW

Hi there. Ran and hosted during this event. Most fun I've ever had at a speedrun event.

+ Good location, much better than Växjö. Having a mall and train station right next to us is dope. The McD's sucks, but the pro strat there is to stock up on snacks from the grocery to satiate those late night food cravings.
+ Street Boyz was fun, that sort of organic culture that grows from each event should be nourished. It was smart to move them out of the stream room.
+ Tournaments were fantastic, no complaints there, SpeedGaming is a good presence to have at ESA.
+ Arcade continues to grow, hoping Daytona makes a comeback!
+ Game selection continues to be dope. Fun races, fun memes, awful games block is always a highlight.

- Please please please get more PCs so that the quiet practice room actually has some. I never saw any PCs in there. The PC room proper was a bit of a mess. People really shouldn't be allowed to setup their personal machines and keep them there the entire week. You're occupying valuable real estate that could be used. Personal machines should be limited to laptops that you take with you when you're done, or at least enforce a rule where you can't leave your own hardware sitting unused for so long in such a busy space of the event.
- There's a lot of hardware, PCs and games and consoles alike, sitting around the venue. Maybe people should tag their machines appropriately so we know who owns them?
- Compensating volunteers with hotel bar vouchers is something I disagree with. Give us a discounted ticket next time. I never went to the hotel bar, echoing what others have said here that it's overpriced.
- Hosting is too easy. Donation readers have it way worse and it's not fair to them. I know hosts have complained about having extra responsibilities, but something has to be done there to balance the workload between hosts and readers.

crazycharliehcrazycharlieh likes this. 
  EDBEDB

It was my first marathon event attended in person, so I don't have any previous ones to compare the experience to. Almost all of my experience was positive. I did not stay at the venue, so I can't comment on that end of it.

The not so great:
- The pop​corn smell. This was really offputting to me. While free pop​corn/ice cream/water is fantastic, I'd honestly have preferred it if only drinks were allowed in the stream halls. The smell of pop​corn combined with the heat when the crowds were larger was quite unpleasant. It would also partially solve the issue of rubbish left lying around, although honestly that shouldn't have been a problem to begin with. Attendees should be better than that.
- PC practice room as mentioned by many. I thought it a bit odd that there was a rig there that had a label on it saying it belonged to someone and it just kind of stayed there the entire time. Never saw anyone using it. I had plenty of opportunities to practice my run, but my run was quite late in the event. Had I been in the first day or two, it would have really sucked. I know that it's possible to ask others to free up a PC, if they are not practicing themselves, but I can see why people might find that a little awkward.
- I think the StreetBoyz stuff was a good idea, but the pop-off and shouting were really obnoxious. It took longer than it should have to move them away, and I'm not sure why it was treated any differently from if an individual in the audience or on the other consoles kept being incredibly loud, so much so as to be heard over the runner.

The great:
- Pretty much everything else! The venue was well situated, easy to find, and well-suited to host such an event.
- There seem to be mixed thoughts on this, but I thought that having both streams in the same room was actually pretty cool. It gave more credence to stream 2, rather than having it basically be the less interesting side stream. At time, the crowds were pretty evenly split between the two. I never thought that the cheering from one was super noticeable on the other, both while running and while in the audience.
- Tech and Helpdesk were both super helpful. Big shout outs to Liva for managing stream 2 so smoothly. Set up and running was all very easy as a complete newcomer.
- All the other attendees that I interacted with. I had a great time.

 
  GreenalinkGreenalink

My 4th ESA Summer.

ES-YAY
+ Location and travel time.
Travelling to Växjö: Just over 2.5 hours
Travelling to Hyllie Station: Just over 10 minutes, get off after first stop.

+ Free breakfast.
+ Multi-game arcade cabinets.
This is cool, not every game played flawlessly but it was nice to experience my favourites with a genuine arcade cabinet setup.
+ Steet Boyz as a 'crowd hype community', grinding for the 0:24
+ Speedgaming room, this was an excellent addition. I was a player for Mario Kart Double Dash, Mario Maker 2's VS Mode races and when the games were running and not laggy (hello SMM2), it was my favourite part of the event. The players I fought against were friendly too.
+ Nothing went missing, my label trick and bringing things that were pretty much unique to me helped out XD.
+ Free Icecream

ES-NAY
- The non-functioning air conditioner in a warm room wasn't great.
- Bar closing at 11pm is a missed opportunity for every night owl. Drinkalink more like Soberlink.
- The shopping malls had no dog toys such as a squeaky hippo to complete my mini-collection.
- Street Boyz when popping off a bit too much and sometimes at the wrong time (Don't get me wrong, I like it when people celebrate).

- Only 1 PC gaming room (or 2/3 if you count quiet practice and personal stream room?), I think this is the second speedrun event I've been to where there was a room full of PCs but the difference between GDQs to ESA is the number of runs done on PC, so there are going to be more runners needing a PC badly for their practice runs. I didn't hesitate when a runner wanted to practice their game in the PC room when it was filled up.

skateman222, I'm sorry to hear the nightmare you had with your console setups.
https:/​/​kb.​speeddemosarchive.​com/​Nintendo_Console_Region

A few years ago, I've made a wiki page on importing NTSC consoles to Europe and see whether or not an EU/UK plug from a EU/UK system works with the NTSC console. Most of them do but some do not.
I hope this sort of thing becomes stickied for NTSC attendees coming to future events.

HiddenPower13HiddenPower13 likes this. 
  Samura1manSamura1man

This was my 2nd ESA.

Pros:
+ Ice cream
+ Feasel, this man coordinated and setuped all of the tournaments alone. I joined for Smash Ultimate and ALTTP Randomizer. I hope Feasel makes a return to next ESA and he'd have a team to help him out setuping tournaments! I read about having tournament finals in ESA streams and I see that working out if ESA is up for it. Especially if tournament there has been going is hype. Discord channel for tournaments next time would be awesome!
+ Great location, really close to shopping center and train station/airport
+ Infodesk being super helpful when needed, thank you Panda, Pottoww and everyone else
+ Breakfast was amazingly good, I had to get into habit few times to wake up between 6 to 9 AM to get breakfast before it closed 😃
+ Atmosphere was fantastic, ESA feels like 2nd family to me by now
+ I wanna play Jubeat now
+ Mafia
+ I think Super Mario Sunshine relay race was well organized, people have been practicing for their shines, for commentary I kinda agree we captains should have talked with runner and runners name should've been on stream. Might be lots of work for tech crew so I understand it was this way better.

Pro and Con:
+- I didn't know where to put this, so I rather put it in middle, I understand Stream 1 not liking Street Boyz hype, especially when it was close to Stream 1. I enjoyed the hype this game brought up, but for the sake of this event I would have liked these setups being outside of Stream 1 and 2. Many times popoffs happened and it was loud.

Cons:
- Often I saw people leaving trash in TV/PC setups, even in stream/quiet practice rooms
- Don't know much about hosting and donation reading, but from reading other peoples feedback I think this can be worked on
- Since everyone is saying, guess I should too. I'm not PC runner myself, but lack of PC setups was definitely a big concern, majority of speedruns being on PC then people didn't get to practice enough.
- Too many races and co-op in ESA streams, I think solo runs were cut out too much for this year

Special:
$25 or $20 runs are amazing, should be done by one person, seems to be working the best that way.

HiddenPower13HiddenPower13, MonojiraMonojira and havrdhavrd like this. 
  Marvelgirl186Marvelgirl186

Stream Room:
-I kind of felt that Stream 1’s space was smaller this year, and I noticed a few runs where there were so many people they had to stand or steal seats from the gaming area. Maybe that was just me?
-I really didn’t like having Stream 2 in the same room as Stream 1. Echoing some other commenters, it was very distracting if you were in one area and then suddenly there’s loud cheering from the other. Also it was very loud if you wanted to chill and play games with friends in that central gaming area.
-I don’t know how we could get people to be more responsible about themselves cleaning up, but man sometimes the stream area was a total mess. I felt embarrassed seeing hotel staff clean up after our group. Like, come on guys, you brought the box of PopCorn in, you can bring it to a trashbin.
-Whoever designed the organization for the Mario relay, THANK YOU. That felt so much smoother, and made the whole even more fun. It was kind of disappointing that it was so late. A lot of people had to leave early the next morning and I know multiple people who didn’t even bother sleeping cause they didn’t have the time. Maybe other games could’ve been moved to Stream 2 to make sure the event didn’t run that late?
-I agree with eN-t that it would be cool to see something like Mario Party as an ending event. 4 teams, 4 different players each round kind of thing. Could be fun!

Tournaments:
-Please bring Feasel back! He was amazing at managing so many tournaments and so many people, and still took time to chat with people who stopped by to say hi. I’m usually not one to sign up for tournaments but I found myself having a super fun time this year, especially being able to meet so many new people 🙂
-The room was very small to host so many people. Suggestion: maybe switch Stream 2 with the tournament room? That way there’s enough space for tournament setup and there won’t be that competition between Stream 1 and Stream 2.
-If there are 4-person races, maybe all four people could be on stream? It was kind of awkward commentating on other runners who were participating but not visible at all.
-Please make a rule that if people are late by a significant amount of time that they are out. Feasel was super-nice about trying to make sure people who were late still had a place, but it made everything more difficult to figure out. Maybe it sounds harsh, but if the tournament starts at 12 and you show up at 12:40, you shouldn’t still be in the tournament.

Hotel:
-Really nice staff! The only problem we encountered was we asked for maintenance to check out our window cause it was making strange noises, but that never was resolved (we settled for figuring out our own temporary fix).
-Breakfast was 👌🏻
-Thank you for bringing back the ice cream and PopCorn! Always good for a nice break!
-I also had the problem that my card didn’t access the stairs. Being on the fourth floor, it was kinda ridiculous to have to wait on one of only two working elevators to go up.

Arcade:
-I loved the arcade this year! I have only a few things I’d suggest to be changed.
-Please leave instructions for the machines. I had no idea you could switch games on the Pandora machines that had like a thousand games to choose from. Also, I don’t speak or understand Japanese at all, so figuring out any of the rhythm games was a no-go for me. Apparently there was a card that helped skip tutorials and such (?) but I never heard about this til halfway through the event.
-I also agree with btrim that the rhythm games were super loud and it might be nice to have those separated a bit.
-I was thrilled that podracers made a return! As it was a childhood game of mine it was nice to finally beat some records on it 🙂

Overall, I had a great time this year at ESA! I hope some of this commentary can help make the event even better next year! 🙂

 
  havrdhavrd

This is easily Top 2 ESAs for me (been in 4 now), very good. The new PCs are great, super sick (will get back to the PC situation). I will mostly write about the negatives since everything else was / is amazing, if i were to go through all the good stuff it would result in writing a book. Shoutout to feasel and Liva (as always) for working super hard for peoples entertainment.

One of the problems was sound effecting the two streams, this could either be Stream one yelling and being heard on Stream two or a certain bunch of Road Rascals. Not a shot at them at all, just a general problem i observed with sound in the main stream space.

The PC-practice room and Quiet practice room was a absolute disaster and was not ok. Reminded me of 2016, the year that shall not be named. Quiet Practice just didn't have PCs for most of the event, just an empty room. Quiet Practice then became a streaming room with a locked door. I had to ask for a friend that wanted to practice his speedgame on how to get access to the Quiet Practice room, since a this point the PC-practice room had about 6 computers left, all of which used by non-runners to not speedrun. Anyone with a runner tag should immediately have access to Quiet practice and literally nobody else, this would require alot of work by the infodesk, but this is actually important.

At the start of the event there were mabye 10+ computers at the PC-practice room, this number dwindled over the course of the event for no explainable reason. Monitor cables getting unplugged for console people playing fighters, monitor cables totally disappearing. This along with few setups, mis-use of setups and disappearing setups made it impossible to practice later in the event. Although the new computers were great, the lack of lower power computers were a massive issue. If we still have access to the old Dreamhack computers, atleast the people playing retro PC games, playing whatever non speedrun stuff for fun can use those. And let the runners who need to practice with a good computer have the good computers.

These PCs were very often not used for practicing speedruns, instead random coop fighters and other non speedrunning activities. In my opinion if people want to do stuff like that, bring a laptop or bring back the dreamhack computers or equivalent if possible. The setups are for people who don't have or can't run on a laptop for practice. I know alot of people who didn't know where to practice their speedgames if it was on a PC.

Some of the area space of the Arcade should have been the Mafia space, and the room used for Mafia or SpeedGaming should have been second stream again. (I miss the comfy small room filled with friends) Many of the rooms were largely unused (Quiet Practice since it had no pcs), one room was largely un-named and only used for hot sauce and karaoke later in the event?.

TLDR: Event amazing, very loud at times, PC situation very bad

NoobSalmonNoobSalmon, VirrwardVirrward and 5 others like this. 
  NilssonAlex92NilssonAlex92

- Pros: Just the whole event in general. Meeting new people and everybody being nice to each other is just amazing. I had an amazing time and will definitely come back next year!

- Cons: Well there is some few cons. Some you cannot do anything about and some you might have to think about.
The Bar closing at 11 PM and no other place to go and have a good time is bad. The location of the event is pretty alright, except the transportation downtown when everything closing early. I know, you cannot do anything about that, but that is a con.
The Ice Cream situation... Lactose-free Ice Cream would be pretty good to have. According to people I talked to, they couldn't eat because of it. Which is pretty damn sad. Lactose intolerant people should have the same opportunity imo as others 🙂

Other then that. Event was good. Venue is pretty alright (Hotel is nice! Just faraway from the downtown area)
Good staff and amazing content!

 
  praskOopraskOo

There are too many positives to mention, so I'll go straight to cons/suggestions:

AC was cranked too low in the conference rooms (PC room, stream 1 + 2), it often felt like the appropriate dress code was hoodie + sweat pants which is not something I want to wear in the middle of summer. Maybe I'm just naive and if it hadn't been that low we would have drowned in gamer smell, but I was actually shivering on some days. On the other hand, AC in hotel rooms barely worked at all.

Lack of PCs, everything was already outlined in the posts above.

Due to setup issues and what not, many runs ended up being moved to stream 2, or just played way later in the day. The games that could be moved to stream 2 were marked as setup games, but the only way to find that out was to find it on the schedule page on the esamarathon website, which is really annoying to browse, especially on mobile devices as information about a single run takes up the whole page. Many people, including myself preferred using the horaro page, but that one didn't have setup games marked. People ended up having their games moved to the very final day of the marathon to stream 2, without even knowing that was a possibility. Perhaps runners should be directly informed that their game is a setup game and that could happen.

Lots of runs just ended up happening way later in the day (including one of mine, that got moved from about 11:30PM to 3:30AM). A way of getting coffee during graveyard times would be very appreciated, maybe just have 1 or 2 electrical kettles and instant coffee that's available when the coffee machine is turned off.

NoobSalmonNoobSalmon, VirrwardVirrward and 2 others like this. 
  MonojiraMonojira

4th ESA for me. I'll try to focus on mainly improvements and downgrades from last year as I've given my opinion on the relocation in the previous year's feedback thread and it was overly positive.

Where this year has definitely improved was in the overall palette of things to do. The event is now so much more than just a charity event. It truely felt like a gathering of nerds, with full utilization of the event floor(s). Further, I loved how welcoming the hotel was yet again. I really do enjoy the hotel and the location and Hyllie seems to grow and hopefully also provide further late-night options in the near future. The organisation of things was pretty smooth for the most part, too. I saw small improvements in terms of all around planning, chain of reporting for volunteers and on-site feedback / request responses. The diversity of runs was exceptional. Scheduling team did a great job on initial planning.

Well, that's where the improvements end but that doesn't mean everything else was worse. Many things have stayed on an equally high level as previous years. Hosting seniors were incredibly dedicated, layouts were fine, the event felt very comfy and the board room, arcade and other activities were just as good as last year.

The PCs and especially monitors were great, but the lack of machines was a big downsite for many runners and visitors alike. While I still don't get how people can go to these events and play auto-chess and league, often in groups, occupying 2-4 PCs at times, the enforcement of kicking these people off worked mostly fine. PC room overall felt very crowded at all times, ignoring the fact that the additional chairs etc could also be a minor escape route hazard...

Moving the arcades downstairs might be a plus in terms of noise pollution and added a very neat feeling of having a more secluded area, in a positive way. But moving 2nd stream into the main room area plus generally rotating and moving the event space around with the overall audio for the audience did make for a very loud streaming area. Having both streams in the same location is bad. Stream 2 was pushed to be less of an "alternative" stream and has been given more high-profile runs while more of the "meme" games were moved to Stream 1. This may have also been an attempt to make schedule corrections less of a punishment to the runners that had their run moved from 1 to 2 and also an attempt to make stream 2 more "included" but neither was needed. And I hope it wasn't a reaction to specific runners who complained having had their run on stream 2 next to these "meme" games (Me and you both know what I refer to) because honestly, everyone BUT those people enjoy being on stream 2. It's less pressure, more comfy, less streamlined. It allows for even more diverse commentary at times too. Stream 2 being in the side room was a big plus personally and for most other runners I spoke to. Speaking of Stream 2, Liva did a heck of a great job again. I know that volunteer numbers were low and as such, having a dedicated donation reader + host on stream 2 would have been harder than during previous years. It's fine but a human reader would have been prefered, obviously.

Which brings me to the uglier things, most stuff that comes to being both runner and volunteer for this year.
First, I wanna say, I appreciate compensation as a volunteer. As the title says, volunteer work does not get paid. At the same time, the vouchers were... unsatisfying? to say the least. I liked having had cheaper tickets in the past but I didnt mind paying full price for alternative compensation. What would have been cool instead of barely useable vouchers would have been: Volunteer swag. Special shirts, caps or whatever. Special badges too. It's a small incentive but pulls in a lot more people that do want to have their (voluntary) work honored. Further, a voucher for the ESA merch or for upcoming events would be great too. I do not want to go into detail as to how much compensation each individual got but as someone with four donation reading shifts, three of which were either at unfornate times (4-8 am) or during hectic blocks, AND being told that donation readers were being compensated higher than hosts for having to be around during the entire runs and not just intermissions made me think that the overall compensation would be more individualized. I was told that it went by hours but then other factors must not have been included and even then I do not want to know what people with half my time have received for compensation...

Another thing that bothered me was the setup of tech this year. Tech was completely removed from eye contact to runners and donation readers, the two main receipients that have to know when a run goes live. Sometimes you were still reading a donation or a partner message to fill the setup time and suddenly the run was already live. I wish that the feedback from the last three years would have been implemented here to IMPROVE communication between stations and not hinder it further. As a donation reader, the option to open up an audio channel on my headphones to listen in to runner/tech mics during setup would have been nice. But even as a runner, you were often in the dark about if tech was ready or not. If you spoke into mics you were often ignored, probably because they were solving things or whatever but because you didnt see tech station, you were not able to tell if they are busy or just not actually there.

Runners, Donation Readers and Tech should at all times be able to have eye contact to each other if needed. Hosts can sit off the side but should also at least be able to communicate with the donation reader and preferably tech as well.

The stream should be moved as it was last year again. Stream one into the big room, better audio for the audience, more even to be seen on the webcam, more hype. Stream two should be the comfy stream again. TVs and other setups in the main area should be moved in the back again, with more couches and general hang out area.

I think that other than that, the event was very enjoyable once again. I can't wait for next year!

FnzzyFnzzy, NoobSalmonNoobSalmon and 2 others like this. 
  HiddenPower13HiddenPower13

Thanks a million to everyone who made ESASummer19 possible, especially behind-the-scenes people. Pretty sure you heroes don't get enough credit for what you do, so here you go!

It's still amazing to me how ideal the location of the hotel is. You pretty much can't improve on that. Weird how the 3rd elevator often seems to out of service though, I wonder if it has anything to do with the event itself or if that's just how it goes there.
That being said though, I can tell you the elevator situation was actually an improvement over last year. There, you were limited to 2 elevators pretty much apart from Friday, maybe.

Stream 2: I got mixed feelings about this one. On the one hand, I understand giving stream 2 just as much space as stream 1 because in doing so, you avoid the notion that stream 2 is just a lesser version of stream 1 and that's that.
On the other hand though, maybe a decent chunk of people actually preferred the more "low-key, comfy" vibe (a bunch of vague words that barely mean anything I know) that stream 2 had last year with the smaller setup. That definitely led to some playful shenanigans, but I understand it might not be realistic to always keep stream 2 in the shadow of stream 1. When I watch a game I like, I don't care whether it's on 1 or 2 because why would I? I'm not sure how the average viewer feels about this.
Overall, stream 2 is probably something that has yet to be "figured out" properly but I don't really have any advice to contribute, sorry about that.

Feasel carried the tournament room so hard it's actually not funny. He WAS the tournament room. It didn't look to me like this man got all that much time by himself, so huge props for all the effort!

I'd like to briefly talk about communication at ESA, as strange as that sounds. As far as I can tell at every ESA, people find themselves in a situation where they need access to equipment or are faced with a problem they can't solve by themselves. I'm confident about 95% of ESA people are very understanding, polite and helpful when it comes to these things. I understand situations where you're like "hey, I need that CRT to practise my run" are uncomfortable. If there's one opportunity for you to leave your comfort zone and face problems like this head-on, it's ESA or never I think.
Of course, situations where you have to essentially beg for things that are supposed to be readily available in the first place need to be kept to a minimum. This section is plenty weird already so I'll just stop it here lmao.

I'd also like to mention all the people who organised side activities, especially because many of them were done rather spontaneously. I really think playing silly games or watching movies together can be a real highlight at any ESA, so I hope these side activities carry on to future events!

Shoutouts to the Double Dash crew and everyone who brought hardware and/or played! Double Dash LANs aren't about to run out of steam any time soon as far as I can tell and I love it. In fact, I'm pretty excited how we can improve the experience even more for future ESA's. I think it can be done if we're just eager enough!

Finally, the Sunshine relay: thanks so much to everyone who helped out with it, whether that be organisation or helping the players practise. A decent amount of people spend a surprising amount of time making sure as many people as possible could learn the essentials for their shine.
It's true that commentary style was different this time around. The SM64 relay was also much more chaotic overall, not just in that aspect. I have to wonder how many players appreciated the fact that you couldn't hear what they were saying, which probably allowed them to fully concentrate on their parts. However, I can definitely see that people would have liked it more if the commentary had been more interactive and incorporating, just like SM64. So since the organisation was pretty amazing this year, this is probably the main aspect that future relays can improve/reconsider.
Overall, I would no doubt describe the Sunshine relay as a big success. We had some tough problems to overcome, but we more or less pulled through in the end. Thanks so much for helping and playing again!

GreenalinkGreenalink likes this. 
  DrakodanDrakodan

Most of the more general points for both pros (Location, ice cream, venue, arcade) and cons (Lack of some resources, noise) have already been highlighted by others so I want to bring up a specific con:

The quiet practice room needs more regulation. On Wednesday night I was feeling the ESA flu something proper, and had a splitting headache. I had a run on Thursday which I needed to practice for, so I went to the private practice room to get away from the noise, only to find that it was being used by people just recording vlogs, playing fighting games and streaming to their Twitch channels?? I distinctly remember that the streamer didn't want to use the, you know, ACTUAL streaming machines because you had to use an ESA overlay or some shit. Apparently that makes it OK to inconvenience other people who need to use the room for its actual intended purpose. I'm not going to name names, but you know who you are, and that was very inconsiderate.

Basically this is completely unacceptable for the single room of the event that is labelled as being a private room. Eventually the staff started kicking people out and putting a notice on the door saying they were going zero-tolerance with noise, but I would say in future it would be a more effective solution to just do regular spot-checks on the room, and throw out anyone who isn't a runner practicing for their run, or people specifically there to help the runner with commentary. There were far too many people in there just openly having loud conversations and laughing, and it's completely unfair on the runners who need some peace and quiet.

SlamphibianSlamphibian likes this. 
  PaulisterPaulister

++ Location, like last year, was perfect! Easily accessible and near a hub airport.
++ The arcade room was an incredible fallback when I wasn't hanging out with people. Especially the jubeat machines, those were a stellar distraction.
+ Loved having streams 1 & 2 in the same room, even if there was some audio leakage from one stream to the other. I like being able to see with a head turn what was going on on the other stream.
+ Great tournament room. Feasel did an amazing job throwing all this together and I can't thank him enough for his support of my side event.

- The playlist kept playing the same 5 songs over and over. They are cool songs don't get me wrong, but I'd aprreciate a little variety.
- Countdowns to build hype are amazing. Counting down 4 hours at a time for a full week to a time that isn't even the stream start time is not.
- This is not under your control, but please can runners not set dumb estimates for their runs? Unless more than one person are submitting the same thing (which you shouldn't do anyway) they don't look cool and when they inevitably encounter terrible marathon luck they look even less cool. PSA: Keep your estimates high.
- I'm not gonna play the saint on this occasion, because i was part of the problem. But if something is quickly shaping up to be a very noisy thing (á la Street Boyz) it's best that it's moved outside of the stream room.
-- The quiet practice room was not quiet for a time and it barely had any equipment to support practising. Despite all that, apparently someone even streamed in there because they didn't wanna use the ESA overlay of the streaming stations (?!?!)

 
  thebpg13thebpg13

So this was my first time at ESA and I loved the entire week from start to finish 😃

Most people have covered my points with both streams being in the same a bad idea and also the whole Street Boyz fiasco (Which I loved btw)
Didn't really see too much of the other rooms such as Mafia and the Board Games room as they weren't within my interests but a nice addition to have for those that do use them 🙂

Ok so to mention a few things that I feel need bringing up, the whole rubbish discussion everyone has mentioned I'm on your side and do agree that people should at the very least put their rubbish in the bins provided since most people that attended are at the point in their lives where they are a adult and putting a little bit of rubbish in a bin isn't that difficult.

The tournament room where they had the races and the GTA San Andreas relay race (Which was incredible btw and I'd recommend keeping that for the next event) was a bit tight and could have done with being in a slightly bigger room if possible.

I thought the hotel was nice as was the room that I stayed in but I have a problem, the whole policy with the food and drink stuff. Now I do understand that they allowed you to take food and drink up to your rooms or you could eat them outside as its the hotel and they expect you to eat their food etc.
But when your food and drink is nearly 2x and sometimes 3x the price of what you can get in the supermarkets it becomes a joke and is horrible really to have to pay the extra money for the same thing in the hotel.

A huge plus side to the event was meeting so many new people and old friends from my last few years in speedrunning, it was great to meet you all and I hope we can all meet again soon 🙂

The actual venue location and where everything was located was perfect travelling distance for me and won't be a factor for me to travel to the event again should it be hosted here in the Summer next year which is great 😃

Overall I don't think there's much else to say other than I had one of if not the best time of my life during this ESA event and also I don't think I mentioned the Ice Cream or PopCorn did I? 😉
Well in that case I'll sign this off by saying Ice Cream and PopCorn was eaten and it was delicious so credits to the chef on that one 😛

 
  revolucionrevolucion

First huge travel for me, I was super happy the whole event so I don't have much other events to compare. I gave a read to what other people said and I mostly agree with them in general so I'll try instead to give my point of view about different things.

About the location: For first time travelers being easy and fast to move from Copenhagen to Hyllie is amazing, same for the way back. Being a little clumsy about orientation I just had to ask like 3 people to make sure I was taking the right train and didn't have any big complication. In my case I had to stay in the overflow hotel, but Hyllie overall is a nice place where you can quickly move between hotels without any major worry. This is possibly the best place ever for this event, even if is very unlikely for me to attend the next ESA Winter I was very happy to hear that is going to be in the same place.

Once inside in the venue, there were a lot of really smooth details besides the ice cream machine, coffee, pop corn and water. The location for the arcade was very good, I would love to see more variety in the arcade some next time. The distribution of the areas was overall good but here I agree a little about what most of people said regarding noises interfering in both streams coming from the other or from people in the middle.

Actually I had a similar situation happening in the streaming station so that's why about the rest of the venue I'm going to start talking about that. Metako did an amazing job, the PCs for the streaming station were great and the organization overall very good, but the fact that both streaming stations were so close to each other is probably something to consider in the future. I didn't get interrupted, I was actually the noisy one in my turn and I just got lucky that the other streamer was super chill but that definitely could be a trouble at some point.

Then about the other rooms I mostly agree about the lack of PCs or in this case I would say more like the overpopulation of people needing PCs. I did notice how hard was finding a PC for practicing, but my run was on day 1! in other words, if I wanted a PC any other day from sunday was just to mess around and not for actual practice for the event and I'm pretty sure I was not the only one. To be fair, the title of the room was "PC Room" and not "Practice Room", so whoever reading that letter would assume every PC is for free usage. For this case I think is a combination between probably needing more PCs and needing more organization to check and give priority to people needing a place to practice.

Speedgaming having a spot was great, and having feasel there was a big honor. Definitely we want that in more events!

Back to the stream room: Big shoutouts to the tech guys doing insanely good setups, also not sure if anyone mentioned but the machine scanning our speedrun.com data from our badge? dude, that's smooth. I'm not sure if anyone had technical issues in the stage but for me that was one of the best things in the event.

There were other rooms in the venue I honestly don't know what they were, like the one called Mafia. The main hall actually was a nice place to stick around having a lot of practice setups and tables, infodesk always being there and having a lot of comfy places to sit if feeling tired.

I don't know what else to say for feedback, then I had my own travel experience but probably not interesting at all, just I can TL;DR it saying that was amazing and I would love to come back if I don't have to sell a lunge for it. Greetings from Argentina, loved being part of your event!

praskOopraskOo likes this.