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Otakon 2012

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Otakon 2012
Post By Sorien. 03/08/12, 04:52 am

Hey guys

I have just returned from Otakon 2012. It was amazing, and blew my mind in so many ways. Unfortunately due to size limits with suitcases etc, I was unable to cosplay. I'm happy to field any questions that you guys have about Otakon.
Sorien
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Re: Otakon 2012
Post By Duckeh. 03/08/12, 05:34 am

Oh wow, that's awesome! How did you find it? Comparison to armageddon? Any pictures? ASK ALL THE QUESTIONS!
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Duckeh
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Re: Otakon 2012
Post By Sorien. 03/08/12, 07:03 am

Ok then. Where to start. Let's give a little background information as to what on earth I was doing there.

I left the country on the 22 June, and arrived back late last night (2 August) i.e. 6 weeks in the USA. I went to the US on a rather large tour, catching up with friends who me and my best friend had made over the past 10 years of forums, instant message programs etc. My tour started with a week in Dallas, Texas. Then 2 weeks in Tampa, Florida. After that I headed to Philadelphia for a week, and lastly and most importantly spent a week in Baltimore, Maryland - home of the Otakon!

So now for a little background on Otakon. As previously mentioned, its a convention that has it's home in the Baltimore Convention Centre, Maryland (in the USA). It has grown lots (apparently) over the years, to about where it sits now, with an audience of about 32,000 people. The convention mainly focuses on anime, but has a few homages here and there to video games, internet memes etc. It spans Friday to Sunday, with Friday being the opening day, Saturday being the big cosplay day, lots of stuff on, full on madness, and lastly Sunday being the winding down day, and is concluded by about 3pm.

Now for my experience. I stayed in a suite in the Hilton Hotel, which has a Skyway (or a air conditioned walking bridge) directly to the convention. Which means I woke up, went downstairs and was in the convention. It was very hot outside, probably about 35oC, so we were lucky that they airconditioning worked so well. Imagine cosplaying a full suit of armour in that! One amusing side effect from that, was that there was about 20 people spanning the street selling "Ice cold water for one dollar".

Right, down to the business end XD. The 'dealers room' (i.e. the place where they sell the merchandise) was about 4 times larger than the one in Wellington Armageddon. Then they had a video games room which contained heaps of consoles connected up to computers with games anything from Tekken to CoD to Tetris. They also had free arcade games like the Motobike ones, DDR etc. This room was also about 3 times the size of the Wellygeddon main room. It was also so big that Otakon is hiring rooms at the Hilton for some of the panels.

Which brings me to the panels. So. Many. Awesome. Panels. Anything from panels on a history of 40 years of video gaming to Japanese Religion in anime, a brief introduction to Yokkai, Pokeholics, (hang on, let me get the guide...actually...I'ma cheat and look online for a link Razz) http://www.otakon.com/events_panellist12.asp
So that's a major difference between Armageddon and Otakon. Otakon, you go to see panels, and have to plan your day around it, the buying comes second. Armageddon seems to be more orientated toward the selling aspect (and cosplay)

I went to three panels held by the same guy, who was a Masters of Anthropology, but he also had a hobby for anime and stuff. So he did 3 lecture style presentations on (as mentioned above) Religion in anime (Spirits, Wheels and Borrowed Gods: Anime and Japan's Sacred Culture) , Death in anime (Dead Like Us: Death Lore and Japanese Media) and Yokkai stuff! (Yokai Nation). They were awesome.

Then there was the workshops you could go to, I didn't go to any workshops, but they could teach you how to draw your own manga, or learn Japanese etc. There was also an ongoing LARP session the whole time. But again, you'd only go to those after you're done planning for other things. Here's an idea of how packed the schedule is (we got a cool sheet called the "awesome sheet of awesomeness) http://www.otakon.com/events_schedule.asp
Oh yeah, they also show anime there (some are dubbed, some are subbed), but I didn't go to any, I had more important things to do, I can buy anime and watch it later, I can't watch panels later XD.

Wow, this is turning into a novel, and I'm barely even halfway through. There's also a rave that goes 'til 3 in the morning.

Cosplaying. Well, Friday is the casual cosplay day, probably about 30% of the people cosplayed on Friday. On Saturday, probably 60-70% of all people were in cosplay. Seriously. Most of them were pretty good too, but I don't have any photos just yet, my camera is with my traveling buddy. Sunday was a wind down day and probably 20% of people were in cosplay. The variety was what you would expect from Armageddon: video games, anime, memes, cult classic movies (ghostbusters etc).

Anyways, my hands are getting tired from typing for now, so I'm going to hang out my second load of washing. Clothes are getting less smelly now ^_^.
Sorien
Sorien
Le grande

Number of posts : 164
Age : 34
Location : Wellington
Transforms into : Superbio man?
Gender : Male
Registration date : 2009-12-11

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