Blobbi_kid’s Visit to Hamleys
Having spent the night with two other neopets obsessed friends, we woke up bright and early (TOO bright and early) to get to Hamleys just as it opened. No such luck. We got there about fifteen minutes late, and already the store was packed. Whilst my friends father kept our place in the queue, I and my other friends spent a frenzied five minutes choosing our voice activated neopets, eventually deciding on a Red Shoyru, a Red Kougra and a Blue Kougra (mine!) quickly named Spud, Rory and Aramink respectively. Then we got in the queue and waited, and waited, and got very hassled by a guy in a Blue Lupe costume who liked one of my friends shoes, (they were fluorescent!) my other friends hair (plaits) and generally leaning on me for some reason. It took about two hours to get to the neopets artists, after having claimed free rare item codes and candy canes, running around Hamleys dementedly and listening to a guy yell “smelly goo! It makes balloons!” Where we had our favourite pets drawn.
Faerie Kau: no problem
Baby aisha: no problem
Halloween Kougra: ahem. the artist had to refer to the other artist, thought it was faerie, and eventually got it though. Yay!
After that, I and my two friends got our pictures autographed by Adam (Donna was in a different part of the shop at the time) and he didn’t seem to know about Halloween Kougras either! When Donna appeared out of nowhere, Adam actually asked her (and I quote) “So we have a Halloween Kougra?” I conclude from this that they are sorely neglected and I must start a save the Halloween Kougras society. However all in all It was a very satisfying event and a scan of the picture is included. [Click Here to See the Halloween Kougra!]
ab2002ab’s Visit to Hamleys
After starting at around 9:30am, I arrived there at 11am, to find that neopets artists would be drawing pictures of your favourite NeoPet in colour, and Adam and Donna were free to answer questions, and solve queries anyone had. Mind you, after only meeting Ealmon Holmes on GMTV the previous morning, I dont think they were quite ready for the turnout! From 9:30am to well past the time I left (past 3pm) the artists drew for everyone and I have to say, they did fantastically well with the pictures, even after so many hours of drawing! It was well worth the three hour queue to get a picture of a Baby Tonu and a Fire Scorchio from the people who actually created these characters themselves!
While we were waiting in the queue, not only did we have Hamleys finest entertainers, we had special visits from a giant blue Lupe who gave hugs to everyone, danced and even tried to steal some of the orange juice from my hand!
After we got the pictures done, I managed to get an autograph and exclusive interview with Donna (Adam wasnt available at the time so I had to come back an hour later for his autograph).
AB: Is the Darkest Faerie game coming out in the UK?
Donna: Yes it is, in November (like in the US), its actually been made in the UK at the moment!
AB: Will we get to see anymore Tonu merchandise on the shelves?
Donna Well, one of the next Voice Activated toys will be the Tonu, but other than that, not really!
AB: Whats up with the Hidden Tower? Why have all the prices inflated (some have gone up over 250%)
Donna I know, they went up massively didnt they! We will be looking at these, and the prices will be coming back down in the future! (At this point, Donna writes in her book Hidden Tower prices under Things to do I might add that by the time I spoke to her, this was getting to be quite a long list, and she told me, that many people had come up to her about so called frozen accounts and many were frozen for good reason!)
AB: Whats happening with the guilds at the moment? Werent the pictures meant to come down?
Donna: What happened with that was, we started on the guilds, and had things planned, but we got sidetracked with things like the battledome hopefully we should return to the guilds and make them more interesting (she hinted about competitions and inter-guild things). Also, we hadnt expected the picture gallery to be so big with neopians, so we had this overload and we couldnt handle it. We should be sorting that out and bringing the pictures section back up I dont know when though!
Clotho’s Visit to Hamleys
I got there at 11-ish, much to my amusement, a HUGE line with probably a hundred or so people there. Settled into the back of the line, with a HUGE man dressed as a Lupe walking around. Quickly made friends with 4 other people waiting in line, and spent the next 5 hours that we were waiting talking to them.
We got to meet Stephanie from the lawyer section, she was conducting interviews, and as we got closer to the head of the line, the CEO came over and chatted with us, giving us personally rare item codes =D
Throughout the five hours, there was a guy working from hamleys walking around, in a jester hat. He eventually began pegging us with broken candy-canes, which we happily munched on for the remainder of the day. When we got close to the front of the line, we got to talk to one of the developers at Think Way Toys who gave us exclusive scoop on several new products coming out in the fall (Voice activated Ixi, Gelert, Usul, and a couple others, that I forgot =D Then will come plush activated pets). Apparently, after talking to him, there’s no plans for Mc Donald’s Happy Meal promotions, or any sort of giveaways that way. Neopets have decided to take a slow and steady market saturation. Very interesting.
Eventually I reached the front and had the wonderful artist draw me my Robo-kacheek. He professed to not actually knowing what they looked like, but I was prepared and brought along my pet’s pic, just in case =D Afterwards, a quick convo with Adam and Donna, who seemed quite bewildered at the phenomina..
As I was leaving, (Around 4:30-4:45) I noticed the line was still quite huge. Several more hours wait and overheard that they were staying on until they’d finished the line!
McDragon’s Visit to Hamleys
I went down to London to get the scoop on the UK release. It was around 9:45 am. We reckoned that it would be empty, having opened only 15 minutes earlier. How wrong we were. As we walked up to the Hamleys store from the Tube station and went in we were stunned to see a massive queue stretching the length of the shop. At one end I could see what appeared to be two artists drawing away on sketchpads. To their left I noticed what appeared to be Adam, talking to some kids (mostly girls). As I looked around I noticed a woman with gingery hair in a Neopets fleece being interviewed by some guy in a suit. I presume this was Donna. Sadly I didn’t get any photos as I just found it way too crowded. I did see the toys though. They were kinda like those Micropets things, except about 4 times the size and in the shape of Neopets. The packaging looked the same and they appeared to do the same things. I gave up and went around London for a bit. When I returned it was little different. The cameraman was focusing the camera on the new NeoPet toys while Donna talked to the guy in a suit. The queue was now stretching down the longer side of the shop instead and appeared even longer. I gave up and returned to wandering around London. At about 11 am I yet again returned to find that amazingly the spectacle was still the same, still a massive queue. The only thing I noted was that the shelve was still covered in NeoPet toys. Either they had restocked or no-one had bought any, not surprising at about $23 each!
aardvark’s Visit to Hamleys
I went we had to travel 120 miles to get to London where we went straight to Hamleys. When we got there we joined the queue for the sketches, it was already at the back of the store and it was only just 12 o’clock! The big Blue Lupe came and said hello to us ( he was wandering up and down the queue), then we started
waiting and waiting and a bit more waiting, my parents got a bit annoyed with waiting so left me and my sister to wait on our own where they wandered around London. After about 2 hours, one of the Hamleys staff came round and gave us broken candy canes they obviously couldn’t sell, they were very nice. Then while my sister waited in the queue I went down to the front and talked to Donna. I asked her some questions one of which was which pet were going to be redone next she told me it was to be the Cybunny and Skeith. She and Adam signed my rare item code card. We then waited for a further 2 and then spoke with the person in charge of the toys who said they had heard about neopets from their niece and had contacted neopets because of that. In the Autum they hope to bring out 6 more voice activated pets. They are Gelert, Ixi, Cybunny, Usul, and I can’t remember the other 2 🙁 (he could only rember 5 anyway). Small plushies are also coming out and keyrings are also on their way! After another 1/2 hour waiting we were at the front of the queue, I got a G old Grundo and my sister got a Fire Scorchio. It was great fun and I would definitely go again!