b (deer21103) wrote in animehonesty,

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anime convention

well, my friend's brother and a group of ppl are going to an anime convention in Otakon tomorrow moring . my sister and i are thinking of going to a convention next year since it's too late now. ive never been to one. has anyone here been to a convention? if so where and how was it? what did you do? i hear its exhausting but so much fun-so much going on!
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Your con experience will probably be the most fun if you either go with or meet up with some good friends, or else are outgoing and like to talk to strangers. (Says the shy person who tends to wander about somewhat aimlessly.) But even if you don't, you can still have an excellent time. There's a ton of people running around in costume, which is always awesome. Almost all of them love to have pictures taken, but ask first. There's stuff to buy that most people can't get where they live. There are big special events--concerts, anime music video contests, and, of course, the Masquerade competition. You've got the art show (and usually an artists' alley), showings of U.S. releases and fansubs, panels on various topics, special guests from the anime and manga industry, karaoke, parties, and more!

Your experience will also depend on the con itself. If you go to Otakon--it's huge! It's got all of the above on at least five times the scale of any other con. A big con like Otakon will have a number of actual guests from Japan, multiples tracks of panels and video showings all going on at once, several different cosplay events. and an almost mind-numbing number of other fans. It's Overstimulation Central. Be sure you eat, sleep, and drink enough water. On the other hand, there are smaller local cons or more specialized cons. Shoujocon, for instance, focused on anime and manga by and for women. (It's recently been merged with Yuricon and reborn as Onnafest.) Shoujocon had many of the same events as Otakon, but they were all on a much smaller scale, and the overall feeling was quieter and cozier, more like hanging out with friends. There was also more down-time (with less events, there's more likely to be times when there's nothing official going on that you really want to do). That's not bad necessarily; it's just a different pace and feel. The new Onnafest also has policies that are aimed at discouraging some of the silliest public behavior, like people carrying signs begging for money or saying "Will do yaoi poses for Pocky," which is endemic at Otakon.

For my own experience, I've been to Otakon and Anime Expo, both huge, Anime Expo with more of an emphasis on industry guests from Japan, Otakon with a bit more with the fannish wackiness. Both have crazy-ass lines for the really big-ticket events; expect to stand around a lot if you're interested in the Masquerade. I've also done Shoujocon; I like the quieter pace, but it's definitely best with friends. Pretty much every con has a web site--check out their guest list and planned events, see what interests you. But you probably won't really know what it's like until you've actually been there. Being at a con is like going to another world, and each one is a little different.

I think one of my favorite ever moments was arriving at Otakon about two years ago. I'd been really stressed out from the drive down and from trying to hook up with friends there. But I walked out onto the lower level, and there was this group of people there who were wearing enormous cardboard boxes drawn on to look like buildings, and immediately my mood was totally great. I mean, where else can you find people who are willing and eager to dress up as Tokyo?

(Yes, Godzilla eventually came along and destroyed them.)
sounds like alot! would i have time to do everything???!!! so there is a schdule of events of everything you named? so you dont have to go to everything then? does going to a convention cost alot of money? how do i find out about different conventions? haha godzilla?
You probably wouldn't be able to do *everything,* because multiple events are usually going on at the same time, even at smaller cons. But yes, most cons have a schedule (sometimes a preliminary version is available online before the actual con), so you can pick and choose what you really want to do.

As for finding out about different conventions, you can try here, at the Anime Turnpike's page for conventions. (I pretty much stopped using the 'Pike when they redesigned...gosh, several years ago at least, because the site became really annoying, but I don't know of any other central list of links.) As for costs, it depends on the con, but probably wouldn't be more than $50-60 for a large con. Of course, don't forget that there'll also be hotel costs (share your room with friends! the more the merrier!), you'll need to eat, and there's always the dealers' room to suck up any cash that's not tied down. But for the money it's a great little mini-vacation. ^_^
the dealer's room? whats that?
It's the big room where people sell stuff during the convention: anime, manga, toys, doujinshi, and all kinds of other sundry merchandising. (And Pocky, usually. ^_^)
pocky??? what's that?
Pocky, courtesy of Wikipedia. ^_^
that's interesting. have you tried some? if so is it as good as they make it sound and where did you get it? thanks for the info.