We all know you can get some great stuff at conventions, but if we’re honest –most of the time the free stuff that’s given out is absolute garbage.
So what happens if you say yes to absolutely everything you get offered? Well, FANDOM went to of the biggest games conventions in the world to find out. With two garbage bags in hand, the challenge was to fill both up to the brim with freebies before the day ended. And… well, you can see the results for yourself.
Want to know how we blagged all this swag? Never fear dear reader, because here are our top tips:
Do the queue in the morning
Some of the best free stuff will generate a long queue, wasting hours of your day. And we all know that queueing is for chumps, so instead do a recon day and make a note of the ones with the most intimidating queue. As soon as you get in on the next day, run like hell to as many of these booth as you can before those dreaded queues start forming.
Walk the floor on the last day
This is possibly the best tip we have. When everything is being packed up on the last day and everyone else has gone home, this is your time to strike. Any left over freebies are just left around instead of being thrown away, so you can walk away with armfuls of swag. Best of all, however, are the display booths themselves. Cutouts, posters, signs and many other parts of the booths are just going to get thrown away as they can’t be used again. If you stroll up offering to take that massive Mario cutout off their hands they’d be more than happy to let you save them a trip to the skip.
Ask people where they got their swag
If you see someone with something that looks like swag, go and ask them where they got it and how. Getting the low-down quickly could mean that you get there before all the good freebies go.
Play the games
They won’t tell you this but a lot of booths will want you to play their game or see their product in order to get a goodie bag. Smile and gush about how good the game is until you realise they don’t have anything to give out and then make a run for it.
As well as getting you to play a game a lot of places will want your contact information. Make sure you have a junk email and phone number ready to give out so you can get all the swag without all the spam.
Ask for free stuff
This is an obvious one, but people do seem to forget that hanging around a booth outside won’t get you showered with free gifts. You always have to ask if they are giving away free gifts, often you have to beg (I don’t care what people say getting down on your knees always helps), lying always helps, and before you have time to be truly afraid of how desperate you’re being, you can always just grab your swag and run.