By Transmute Jun
San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) has announced details regarding the exclusives portal for this year’s show, which will be held July 18-21 (with Preview Night on July 17). Prior attendees will likely recall that in 2018, SDCC changed to online lotteries to replace the majority of the in-person random drawings that used to occur each morning of the con in the Sails Pavilion. While there were some issues in implementation this first year, the online lotteries’ main goal of reducing lines was clearly successful, and as such, it is not surprising to see this approach updated for the current year’s con.
Fans can enter the lotteries through the Exclusives Portal, which must be accessed through the Exclusives tab in the attendee’s Member ID account. New this year is the credits system, which was introduced at WonderCon last March. Unlike last year, in 2019, attendees will be limited in the number of lottery entries they can make. Every attendee has been allocated credits for each day of the con for which they have a badge. These credits can be viewed in the upper left corner of the Exclusives Portal screen.
Fans attending the show will notice that Wednesday/Preview Night has 2 credits, while Thursday shows 17, Friday has 26, Saturday has 21 and Sunday is 11. These credits can be used to enter drawings of the attendee’s choice. Each drawing requires a minimum of 1 credit, however it is possible to spend multiple credits (even all of a day’s credits) on a single lottery. The more credits spent, the more chances the attendee will have to win. Note that even though the portal is named ‘Exclusives’, the lottery system applies to studio and comics autographing sessions, as well as to buying slots for exclusive merchandise.
While obviously there are no guaranteed winners, the advantage to the credits system is that attendees will only enter lotteries that actually interest them, whether that be for purchasing exclusives, attending studio-sponsored cast autographing sessions, or meeting comic creators. At WonderCon this year, the credits system resulted in far fewer unclaimed wristbands, and attendees who did win were happy with their winnings.
In contrast, at both WonderCon and SDCC last year, attendees could enter every single lottery if they wished, even those in which they had no interest, leaving many winning entries unclaimed over the course of the show. In effect, this wasted the opportunity for other fans to get the collectibles they desired or to meet the people who create their favorite properties. Given that there is such a wide variety of opportunities available in the Exclusives Portal for each day of the con, fans should be able to find something that interests them, which they will be eager to claim should they win. Additionally, with fewer entries in each individual lottery, attendees have a higher chance of winning each lottery they enter than they did in 2018.
Another welcome addition to this year’s Exclusives Portal is the ability to change requests. Until the portal closes, attendees can remove requests, make new ones and alter the number of credits assigned to each request, even after their initial submission.
Attendees who wish to enter the online lotteries have until July 9 (12:00 p.m. PT) to make or change their selections.
What do you think of the changes to this year’s SDCC online lotteries? Join the conversation on FoCC!