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CODE NAME: IOWA OPERATION A.R.M.O.R. – Assembly Required 2020 Recap

Today, Codename: Iowa presented A.R.M.O.R. (Assembly Required Mass Online Rally) in place of their annual Assembly Required event. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the online event and folks, let me just say right up front that I had an absolutely fantastic time. Sure, nothing will take the place of being at a show with old friends and new, but the team from Codename: Iowa did an outstanding job of bottling that feeling and serving it up for us back home.

Below is a breakdown of today’s events. You’ll note that certain images come from the G.E.A.R. kits provided to attendees as part of the show. I opted for the Captain’s G.E.A.R. Kit and posted my first unboxing video capturing the awesome contained within. Folks, before you click through below, there’s a few things you should know upfront:

1. This video is rated PG-13; My anxiety led to awful language (Sorry). 2. Due to the aforementioned anxiety, I must’ve said the word “dope” at least 200 times. Ugh, sorry. 3. I’m old and technology is beginning to escape me. You’ll see that in obvious form below. With all that said, check it out:

Yikes, I really need to get better at this video thing. To try to clean it up and get to the point, the kit was very well made and very much appreciated. It even included a Retro G.I.Joe figure, Snake Eyes. I haven’t been able to find any Retro offerings, so this was a very pleasant surprise. Now that you know the equipment we’re working with, let’s check out what was on the agenda, courtesy of Codename: Iowa –


NOVEMBER 7, 2020 | 9A CST

“Adaptation is key to any successful op.” With the events occurring this past year, we’ve shifted our tactics and moved our annual Assembly Required G.I. Joe conference to a new area  of operation: the internet. Operation A.R.M.O.R (Assembly Required Mass Online Rally) combines much of the beloved DNA from our traditional A.R. event with the resources we have at hand for an engaging online fan experience.


09:00 AM – Cartoons & Cereal

10:15 AM – Welcome (Travis/Brian)

10:30 AM – Joe Declassified Panel (Part 1 ~90 mins)

12:00 PM –  Break (Travis/Brian)

12:15 PM – Ron Wagner Panel (~45 mins)

01:15 PM – Joe Declassified Panel (Part 2 ~90 mins)

02:45 PM – Full Force Panel (~75 mins)

04:00 PM – Codename: Iowa Panel (~30 mins)

04:45 PM – Custom Contest  (Travis/Brian)

05:00 PM – Wrap-Up (Travis/Brian)

(all times listed are CST)

09:00 AM – Cartoons & Cereal

The morning kicked off with a viewing of cartoons (both G.I.Joe and Action Force). A chat was available so that attendees could converse while enjoying breakfast together. In case you missed it, here’s a feed from the GI Joe YouTube channel so you can relive the adventure –

10:30 AM – Joe Declassified Panel (Part 1 ~90 mins)

01:15 PM – Joe Declassified Panel (Part 2 ~90 mins)

The Joe Declassified Panel was a real treat, as it took us through the history of G.I.Joe mail-in offers. I’ll share the panel video if the team makes it public.

12:15 PM – Ron Wagner Panel (~45 mins)

The Ron Wagner panel was an absolute blast. Those in attendance at the panel were treated to Ron’s banter (oh, he drew a Steel Brigade piece too). The pieces were available to those that purchased G.E.A.R. kits, but there was talk that maybe, just maybe, a very limited supply would be made available to non-attendees.

With that said, don’t fret! You can get your OWN Ron Wagner sketch directly through the Codename: Iowa site! Check it out –


Imagine having an original sketch of a character of your choice drawn by legendy G.I. Joe artist Ron Wagner. Now make it happen. Order your sketch now and we’ll contact you with details about your commission request. Finished sketches will be mailed in secure protective packaging.

Sketches will be completed and sent in the order in which requests are received.

  • Pencil Headshot- $80.00
  • Ink Headshot – $120.00
  • Pencil Full Figure – $160.00
  • Ink Full Figure – $250.00

02:45 PM – Full Force Panel (~75 mins)

The Full Force presented a panel on G Force, a fan club based on the premise of an elite G.I,Joe Vehicle driver team. As with the Declassified Panel, video if this panel will be available at a later time, so I’ll share it then. In the meanwhile check out images of the material discussed below. –

04:00 PM – Codename: Iowa Panel (~30 mins)

The Codename: Iowa panel was super informative, as it gave a recap of the last 10 years – The mission statement of the team, where they’ve been and where they hope to go in the future. As you would’ve guessed, video from this panel will be made available later, so I’ll be sure to share it. Until then, make sure to check out the Codename: Iowa website for more information.

04:45 PM – Custom Contest  (Travis/Brian)

Apologies all, but I missed this part of the presentation and cannot comment on what was on display and who won (My Toddler demanded my presence and I’m forever at his service). Please keep it locked on the Codename: Iowa Facebook Page for more details. 

At this point, the show wrapped up with a killer reveal of next year’s theme – NINJA FORCE! 

I really had such a great time. I can only imagine how fun the Assembly Required is in person, so now I’m on a mission to make it out next year. I hope to see you there! 

4 comments on “CODE NAME: IOWA OPERATION A.R.M.O.R. – Assembly Required 2020 Recap

  1. LittleWolvie

    Love the Ron Wagner sketches! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

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