Oh, hey. Didn't see you there. Is it another blue moon?
Just wanted to drop it to you that the first European Yu-Gi-Oh! Extravaganza is happening this upcoming weekend... here in Ghent, Belgium (my home region, lol).
And it is happening during F.A.C.T.S., the biggest convention of the BeNeLux area (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg, FYI).
So obviously, I will be joining to see what it's going to be like... and so should you!
What is the Yu-Gi-Oh! Extravaganza?
I have no idea!
Lol, just kidding. Until a few days ago, it was still kind of vague for us Europeans, because it only has occurred in the states.
But this is the definition found on the yugioh website:
A Yu-Gi-Oh! Extravaganza is a fun-filled weekend for Dueling fans of all ages. The entire weekend is comprised of Public Events and activities, such as Win-A-Mat tournaments, WCQ: Regional Qualifiers and Sealed Pack Play tournaments. Duelists can also take part in fun Yu-Gi-Oh!-themed activities and compete for a chance to win a Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series prize card.
No seriously, WHAT can you do?
In reality, this means a big 2-day event (which is part of the FACTS convention), where you can do participate in all sorts of public events, you would otherwise see at a YCS.
Giant Card, Structure Deck tournament, Regionals, Win-a-mats, Dragon duel and Sealed Pack events are organized all weekend long.
And during the event you can gather points in order to participate in the final play-off to obtain Minerva, the Exalted Lightsworn
And the convention?
Seriously, just check the website of facts: http://www.facts.be/.
Several guests and artists will be coming, including John Rhys-Davies, Christopher Lloyd, Alfie Allen, Peter Mayhew, Ernie Hudson and more.
Also, lots of boots, games, cosplay events, and other regular convention stuff.
What else can we do in Ghent?
So the convention closes and you still want to do something? No problem.
Starting Point: Korenmarkt
There's lots of places to go to in Ghent, but for most of them, the starting point, or the point of orientation is de city Center, the "Korenmarkt".
Getting there isn't difficult. Take the tram from the convention area and it'll stop automatically there (about half an hour ride).
From there on out, there's tons of restaurants and pubs within walking distance.
Within ten minutes of walking, you can go to:
- the "Dreupelkot", thé place to experience the Flemish Jenever (liquor in many flavors);
- the "Dulle Griet", thé place to experience over a hundred different Belgian (and foreign) beers (try the Kwak);
- the "Kastart", a famous student restaurant serving Pasta with a special home-made sauce;
... and many other places.
Playing cards or games after the convention
So you still want to play (card)games after the convention ends? No problem. The gathering point for Yugioh players (and other cardgame/boardgame/videogame people) in Ghent is the Outpost Ghent.
To get there, take the tram from the convention to the train station and take a walk to the Ottergemsesteenweg 13 (just google-maps it!).
The place is open until after midnight. You can also get drinks and snacks here (or nearby), so you won't starve.
Picking up a movie
Sure, why not, though it's quite some distance. By car, it's best to parc at the "Sint-Pietersplein" parking and go the last few hundred meters by foot.
Yes, you CAN park your car at the movie theater, but it's usually crowded and there's a chance the parking area is full.
If you're not by car, your best options are to take the tram to the station and then take bus lines 34, 35, 36, 58 or 70.
If you're more into alternative movies, there's also 2 alternative movie theaters with "limited release" movies.
The first one is the "Sphinx" theater, at the korenmarkt (just take the Tram to the Korenmarkt).
The other is "Studio Skoop". Easy to reach by car, quite a long distance by public transportation (take any bus or tram that goes to the "Zuid" area).
I'll be there... and you?
Yeah, as the title says. Since I've been going to FACTS every year (safe the year it almost coincided with London MCM comic-con and I went there instead), I'll be going this year as well. But this time I'll take my deck boxes along with me (lol).
So, see you there?
Otherwise, until the next time.